North Adams Transcript
NORTH ADAMS -- North Adams Post 125 has been red hot since the start of the American Legion state tournament.
Northbridge Post 343 cooled them down Monday evening with an 18-5 mercy-rule win in five innings.
North Adams travels to John. J. Tivnan Field in Worcester for 4 p.m. against Springfield 21, whom the beat 12-2 on Sunday. North Adams will be the home team. The loser of that game will be eliminated from the tournament. The winner will play Northbridge at 7:30 p.m.
"We’ve seen Springfield already, but we can’t take them lightly," Chase Preite said. "From here on out, we can’t take anybody lightly after [Monday night]."
Northbridge got off to a quick start on Monday.
"We had the wind taken out of our sails way early," starting pitcher Preite said. "It’s tough to bounce back after a first inning like that."
Preite struck out the first two batters he saw in the game, but then issued back-to-back walks. Northbridge took advantage of the free passes when Jacob Byrne drove home a run on a single to right field and advanced to second on an error by Slayter Aubin in right field; Greg O’Donnell advanced to third on the error. Matthew Phelan followed that up with an RBI single of his own and Byrne scored on an error by center fielder Zach Larabee to make it 3-0.
Northbridge sent 12 men to bat in the second inning and scored seven runs to make it 10-0.
"It’s called baseball, there are ups and downs," Post 125 coach Bob Rumbolt said. "Like I tell the pitchers, every pitch you make a mistake on you have to forget about it. We have to forget about this game and come back [today] and show people what we’re made of."
Tanner Bird will take the mound today after pitching 12Ž3 innings Monday. Northbridge scored two runs off him in the fourth inning. He also allowed two inherited runners to score.
"Mentally we have to get back in the game, forget about this," Rumbolt said. "You go out of the gates and forget about it. Forget about it and comeback [today] to show everyone the team we are capable of being. We know this wasn’t us."
Post 125 committed four errors on Monday, two of them in the first inning. Its pitchers also had a tough time finding the strike zone, issuing 10 walks. Two outs in an inning also presented challenges, as Northbridge scored 12 of its runs with two outs.
"That team was really good with a proficient offense," Rumbolt said. "Especially with two outs. They produced and produced and produced in almost every inning."
Post 125 scored three in the second and two in the fifth. Preite hit a two-run double in the second and Conner Tworig had an RBI. Zach Brassard and Aubin each added an RBI in the fifth.