With the score locked at 1-1 and a 1-0 count at the bottom of the eighth inning, Co-Captain John Simourian ’16 belted a line drive to center field which drove Taylor Beckett ’17 from second base to home plate, giving Andover a 2-1 walkoff win against Brooks. With two back-to-back wins earlier in the week against Northfield Mount Hermon (NMH), Andover now holds a 9-2 record, and the team is on a four-game win streak.
Simourian, who boasts a 0.485 batting average on the season, said, “I stepped into the box just wanting to hit the ball as hard as I could. Taylor did a great job leading off and getting on second and I was just trying to drive him in.”
Andover’s game against Brooks was a defensive showdown. With pitcher Sam Conte ’18 throwing four strikeouts and allowing only three hits from the mound, the game was tied 1-1 after four innings. Andover’s run came after Nick Latham ’16 singled, advanced to third, and made it home on a failed Brooks double play attempt.
Conte and Simourian formed a confident pitcher-catcher dynamic that carried Andover to its victory.
Conte said, “I didn’t have a lot of control early on, but I settled in. When I realized I didn’t have it… the one person who was always there and helping me through it was John Simourian… He helped me through [the game] and I feel like I could do anything with him.”
Conte left the game after throwing 71 pitches in four innings. Matt Wesoloski ’16 closed out the remainder of the game with four shutout innings, striking out five players and allowing only one hit.
With the score knotted at one-all after seven innings, the game went to extras. Wesoloski put out three Brooks batters in the top of the inning, and Beckett and Simourian’s doubles finished off the game.
Simourian said, “ I step [into the batter’s box] looking to kill the first pitch I like and knowing I can hit any pitcher”
Earlier in the week, Andover’s offense exploded for a total of 27 runs in the 10-4 and 17-1 routes against NMH in a double header.
In the first game, Andover scored at a consistent rate, averaging at least one run per inning. Richie Ciufo ’16 went 2-3 with a double, a triple, and three runs batted in, and he drew two walks as well. Latham went 2-5 with two doubles, an RBI, and a run.
Travis Lane ’18 pitched 5 innings and notched 7 strikeouts. Wesoloski pitched the final 1 ⅓ innings, getting two strikeouts and recording the save.
Not soon after, Andover’s bats stayed hot for a 17-1 victory over NMH. Andover saw offensive contributions across the board, with eight batters getting at least one hit.
Leading the way were Conte, who went 2-4 with two singles and four RBIs, and Co-Captain Payton Jancsy ’16, who went 2-4 with two singles and two runs. The team flourished with assistance from Coach Adam Wright.
“We had a great mindset starting off. Helping us was Coach Wright, he’s very good at the mental part of the game. KG always talks about how if we do the little things right, the big things will take care of themselves, and Coach Wright helps a lot with the little things”, said Conte.
Andover was as consistent defensively as it was offensively. Robby Cerulle ’17 took the ball as the starting pitcher, and he allowed only three hits over six shutout innings on the mound. Anthony Redfern ’18 pitched the seventh inning and recorded a strikeout.
This weekend, Andover faces off against Phillips Exeter Academy in a doubleheader, hoping to extend its four game winning streak.