Patriots' offense wakes up to top Panthers

HOOSICK, N.Y. — In their first 11 innings of the season, the Mount Anthony baseball team was stuck on zero hits. But once they broke that skid, hitting becomes contagious.

They used that momentum, putting up 10 hits and seven runs for a 7-4 victory over Hoosick Falls on Thursday afternoon.

All the runs came in the middle innings — three in the third, two in the fourth and two in the fifth.

"We went almost 12 innings without a hit but then we finally got a hit and then things started happening." said Mount Anthony coach Walt Parmenter. "Then everyone was starting to make good contact. We had a couple hits that [ended up as] outs, but they were swinging the bats today."

The Panthers took the early lead with a pair of runs in the bottom of the first inning. Jordan Case led off with a walk and then Tyler Lindsey was hit by a pitch to put two runners on with no one out. Brandon Decker sacrificed the runners over and then Ryan Sanders drove in a run with a groundout before Cody Hodges' single drove in another.

It stayed that way until the top of the third. Decker, who started for the Panthers, got the first two hitters in the inning out, but then gave up Mount Anthony's first hit of the season, a single to Brian Grace in the leadoff spot. He reached second on an error by the centerfield and then Noah Loomis came up next. He hit a cueball shot that the second baseman couldn't get to quickly enough and he was safe and on the throw, Grace came around to score MAU's first run. Ryan O'Neill walked and James Marsden drove in Loomis to tie it at 2-2. O'Neill eventually scored on an error by the first baseman to take a 3-2 advantage.

"Decker looked good, I took him out with 63 pitches to save him for Saturday (against Greenwich)," said Hoosick Falls coach Mike Lilac.

Decker took the loss, going three innings and allowing four runs and five hits. He struck out four and walked two.

MAU added a pair of runs in the fourth as well. Cam Turner led off with a base hit and Ryan Mayhew added one as well. Turner eventually scored on a balk by reliever Andrew Stevens and Buck scored on a RBI groundout.

Then the Patriots opened it up with another pair of runs in the fifth, Liam Center scoring after a single with one out and Blake Carey scoring after a double.

Center went 3-for-4 with three singles and a run scored.

"Liam had a good day at the plate, not just hitting, but also with good base running," Parmenter said. "He kept innings alive by hustling down the line. That's what we need guys to do."

Hoosick Falls cut into the deficit with single runs in the fifth and sixth, the first after a Case triple and an RBI groundout from Lindsey and the other a sacrifice fly from Sam Richard to drive in Hodges.

"Jordan is strong for his size and he has quick hands," Lilac said. "It's good to have him at the top of the lineup."

Grace pitched well, allowing four hits and three runs allowed in his six innings, walking three and striking out four.

Loomis came in to pitch the seventh and retired the Panthers in order to finish the game.

"It was a great job for his first game, he kept the ball in the strike zone and we were able to make plays in the field behind him," Parmenter said.

MAU improves to 1-1 and Hoosick Falls drops to 3-4.

"When you lose, you still want to play your best, but I don't think we did today," Lilac said.


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