By Harry Kane
The Somerville Alibrandis Baseball Club sported army camouflage hats on Monday as they dominated over the Brighton Braves in the first game of the semi-finals.
The first two innings were a wash. The game picked-up in the top of the 3rd inning when Somerville pitcher Sean Sullivan walked a Brighton Braves batter. Following a sacrifice bunt, a runner advanced into scoring position. Next, Brighton Braves #11 knocked one past diving Somerville third baseman Marc DesRoches, and one runner scored for the Braves. A broken bat blooper to shortstop allowed another runner to score, after a sloppy throw to first base.
A ground-out ended the inning, but the damage was done, and the Somerville Alibrandis were down by two early in the game.
Somerville answered with 4 runs in the bottom of the 3rd inning. With two outs, crackerjack centerfielder Mike Maguire stepped up to the plate and ripped a single into left field. He then stole second base with ease. This was the turning point in the game.
The Braves pitcher James Greeley and their catcher had a conference on the mound, but it didn’t seem to calm the nerves of the hurler. The next toss was a wild pitch, and Maguire advanced to third base. Somerville’s catcher Ted Dziuba was walked, leaving runners on the corners for shortstop Steve Rogers. Then Rogers hit a line drive into left, scoring two and making it a tie game.
Second baseman Logan Gillis and shortstop Steve Rogers scored on Bobbie Barrett’s stand-up double, adding another two runs.
At 9 p.m., in the top of the 4th inning, the score was 4-2 in favor of the Alibrandis. First baseman Mike Cunningham scooped up a dribbler, sliding on the grass and flipping it to pitcher Sean Sullivan for the first out. A pop out, and ground-out, made it a 1-2-3 inning for Sullivan.
The Alibrandis continued on the attack in the bottom of the 5th inning. Rightfielder Mike Maguire was walked to start off the inning. Shortstop Steve Rodgers got a base hit and a RBI. The score: 5-2.
In the bottom of the 6th inning, third baseman Marc DesRoches hit a line drive, rounding second and making it to third base on an error. First baseman Mike Cunningham was walked, and with runners on the corners, Braves pitcher James Greeley decided to have another heart to heart on the hill. A spectator in the stands said, “What we got, a rain delay, here?” But there was no rain, just the sweat of a tiring pitcher.
Cunningham stole second base and DesRoches scored, chalking-up another run for the Alibrandis. Then Maguire drilled another into right field, bringing in Cunningham, and completing the final rally for Somerville.
In the final inning the Alibrandis looked sluggish, committing several errors on the diamond and allowing the opposition to score. With just one out left to end the game, Sean Sullivan left the mound after a superb night of pitching. Brian Tanguy stepped in and got the final out with one pitch.