Scituate holds off Smithfield/NP

Scituate holds off Smithfield/NP

Post 29 evens record in R.I. 19-20 Elite League with wild 11-10 victory

SCITUATE – Scituate Post 19 needed this win.

And the Senior Division team needed to hold off a big comeback in the final inning by Smithfield/North Providence Post 29 in order to end up with a wild 11-10 victory in front of a large gathering at Manning Field and even its R.I. 19-20 Elite Baseball League record at 3-3.

The win pushed Scituate into fourth place in the standings behind Gershkoff/Auburn Post 20, which is 7-1, and Upper Deck Post 14 and New England Frozen Lemonade Post 101, which sit at 5-3 – Upper Deck rolled to an 8-1 victory over NEFL on Monday night in Cumberland.

Scituate will now turn its attention to a four-game-in-five-days stretch that begins tonight at 5:30 p.m. with a game against South Kingstown Post 39 (2-6) at Manning Field. A game against Howard Rogers (3-4) and a doubleheader against R&R Construction (1-5) will follow.

As for Smithfield/NP, which was coming off a loss last Wednesday night to Gershkoff/Auburn, Post 29 is now 3-4 with a big game on tap tonight at 5:30 p.m. at Warwick’s Mickey Stevens Complex against NEFL. On Friday at 5:30 p.m., Smithfield/NP will host Upper Deck at Smithfield High.

Each team scored twice in each of the first two innings, but Scituate only produced one hit during that time – Garrett Baldwell two-out RBI double in the bottom of the second that tied the game at 4-4.

Post 29, which committed seven errors in the game, made five during those two innings that resulted in four unearned runs and made life a bit difficult for its starting pitcher, Nick Rioles, who only lasted three innings and gave up an earned run in the third and just three hits and a walk.

“Nick was pitching awesome,” said Post 29 coach Jim Connell Jr. “He was getting us groundballs, but we couldn’t pick up the rock and then we threw some balls away. We gave them those extra outs, and the next thing you know, it’s four runs.”

The earned run that Rioles allowed, which came on a run-scoring single to center by Lucas Pierce, gave Scituate a 5-4 lead, but again, Smithfield/NP answered back in the top of the fourth on an RBI single to left by Chris Olean.

Scituate eventually reclaimed the lead for good in the fourth on the first of two run-scoring singles from Evan Pendergast, and in the fifth, the hosts tacked on four runs, with Jake Levine highlighting the inning with a two-run single.

In the top of the sixth, Smithfield/NP cut its deficit to three runs on a two-out bases-loaded walk to John Golato that was followed by an RBI single by Joe Pitrone, but Scituate produced its final run in the home half of the inning on Post 29’s final error of the night.

Down, but not out, Smithfield/NP put together a neat comeback in its final swings, as Nick Conte and P.J. Rioles led off with walks and Ron Baccala and Jordan Golato followed with RBI singles.

A sacrifice fly by Olean knocked in Baccala with the run that made it a one-run affair, and when Post 29 loaded the bases with two outs, that put everyone at the field on the edges of their seats.

Up stepped John Golato, who was 2-for-3 with a walk, a double, and two runs batted in, but Golato hit a hard, sinking line drive to third that third baseman Demitri Sampalis snagged with a nice grab to end the threat and the game.

Before Post 29’s dramatic rally, “I told everyone, ‘The best thing to do is to show some character,’ and they did,” Connell recalled. “They came back and they hit the ball – everybody had a piece of the game today – and the good thing is that we fought and clawed back and cut it to one.”

“It was a back-and-forth game and it was fun,” offered Scituate coach Anthony Parrillo. “Both teams hit much better than the first time we played, and they kept playing right to the end.”

Speaking of Sampalis, pictured, who re-entered the game in the top of the seventh as a defensive replacement, he was the winning pitcher, as he worked the first four innings before exiting the mound with 73 pitches under his belt.

Sampalis got off to a rocky start, as he walked his first two batters and hit the third one he faced, but he settled down nicely, struck out three batters, and allowed six hits, four earned runs, and one more walk.

Offensively, Cal Parrillo led Scituate’s attack by going 2-for-4 with a double and three runs scored, while Smithfield/NP saw P.J. Rioles reach base four times with two base hits and two walks, Morgen Doughty collect two singles, and Baccala also wind up with two RBIs.

Scituate was a week removed from its second win of the year, a 6-1 triumph over NEFL, which saw Luke Barden pitch a splendid six-hitter that included six strikeouts and Logan Butkins and Parrillo propel Post 19’s offense with two hits each.

Scituate and Smithfield/NP had faced each other in the second game of their seasons on July 8 at North Providence High, and Post 29 was able to roll to a 13-0 victory that saw the ballclub collect just four hits, but take advantage of 11 walks and three hit batsmen.