The Pride’s Brandon Russo stepped to the plate with the bases loaded, and two outs in the bottom of the sixth inning. He was in this same situation in the second inning, but could not capitalize. Teammate Kyle Allen had already driven in the game’s first run with an RBI single two at-bats earlier, but Russo had the opportunity to break the game wide open.
A couple pitches in, Russo sent a deep fly down the left field line that made its way to the 320 sign. The left fielder could not haul it in, and Russo ended up at second base with a bases clearing double. This gave the Pride a 4-0 lead, and propelled them to their first win of the season over Western New England University at the brand new Archie Allen field.
“Great to get the first win on Archie Allen field,” said head coach Mark Simeone. “We got some clutch hits. Kyle Allen broke the ice with a RBI single, and then Russo’s bases clearing double was huge and it held up.”
Russo finished with 2-3 day with three RBI. Gleason went 1-4 with an RBI and a run scored. Catcher Pete Marsicano had a 2-4 day as well. He would have driven in the game’s first run if it had not been for Erik Lacaire’s throw to gun down Russo at the plate in the fifth inning.
Springfield’s pitching was nearly perfect. Collectively, the staff gave up just one hit and four walks while striking out 12 between three pitchers. Brian Johnson got the start, and went four innings, allowing the only WNE hit and striking out six.
Aside from pitching out of a bases loaded jam in the fourth inning, Johnson looked extremely sharp.
“My arm felt great. Everything was really working,” said Johnson. “A lot of energy out there.”
Fletcher Comment relieved Johnson, and pitched a hitless 3.2 innings. He issued only one walk, and struck out four hitters in the process. After recording the first two outs in the eighth inning, Cole Donovan entered and picked up a four out save. All pitchers induced a lot of soft contact, and the defense made some crafty plays behind them.
“We did it together. When you pitch a shutout, it makes it a little easier, and all of our pitchers pitched really well,” said Simeone. “We played some good defense too.”
The Pride go right back to action tomorrow as they take on Westfield State at home. First pitch is scheduled at 3:30 p.m.