Baseball, Sports, Spring Sports

Baseball: Strong Hitting Blasts Andover to Victory

With two outs and the bases loaded in the bottom of the fourth, Taylor Beckett ’17 hit a hard single to center field. His hit drove home two runs, giving Andover a 5-1 lead over Northfield Mount Hermon (NMH) in its first game of a home doubleheader. Andover went on to win both games 7-2 and 4-0, respectively.

Playing its third game in three days, the team defeated Brooks 7-3 on Monday, improving its season record to 8-2. These results, along with Andover’s 3-2 win over Pingree last week, pushed the team’s win streak to four games.

Getting off to a slow start, Andover remained tied 1-1 against NMH until the bottom of the third inning when John Simourian ’16 grounded out to score a runner from third base. After an inning-ending double play to finish the top of the fourth, the team built up its momentum on offense, tallying four hits and three runs in the bottom half of the inning. Shortstop Ben Reinisch ’15 scored on an error, followed by Beckett’s two-run single.
Co-Captain John Festa ’15 and Beckett contributed two more runs in the bottom of the sixth, and the team tallied nine hits.

In its second game of the day, Andover once again came out on top, consistently forcing NMH to make plays. Although the team only generated four hits, all three of its R.B.I. came on sacrifice plays. NMH only managed to strike out one batter.

In the bottom of the fifth, Beckett and John Simourian both contributed sacrifice fly balls that drove in Sam Zager ’15 and Joe Simourian ’18, while Festa’s walk with bases loaded brought another runner home. Zager scored an additional run off a wild pitch earlier in the game.

Starting pitcher Jake Nelson ’15 earned the win, striking out seven batters and giving up four hits in five innings. Matt Hosman ’15 relieved Nelson in the sixth and surrendered just one hit to seal the shutout and record the save.

Andover continued its offensive dominance in its next matchup against Brooks. Once again, batters actively took chances at the plate, conceding only one strikeout and forcing a whopping seven errors for the Brooks defense.

John Simourian and Joe Simourian both tallied their eighth R.B.I. of the season in Monday’s victory, while Beckett batted in his fifth run of the week.

“Honestly, our pitching staff has been incredible, and they do a great job keeping us in every game. We had three games in four days and every guy in the bullpen had to step up and every one of them did. We also tightened up a little bit on offense, lessening our mistakes on the base paths and scratching runs across when we needed to,” said Zager.
With its next matchup on Friday against Groton, Andover will be looking for ways to improve in order to extend its good form.

May 1, 2015