WooBall Weekly: Bravehearts still in FCBL final playoff spot

With just three weeks to go in the Futures Collegiate Baseball League regular season it was important for the Worcester Bravehearts to start putting some wins together to solidify their spot in the post season.

Tuesday, like many days in July this year, saw rain hit the area. The Brockton Rox were in town, and the crew at Hanover Insurance Park at Fitton Field did all they could to get the game in, but Mother Nature came out on top once again. Brockton does make one more trip to the HIP this season, on August 11th, so there is a chance the game could be made up as part of a doubleheader.

It was off to New Britain Stadium Wednesday for the Bravehearts as they took on the Bees, and it was a night about the pitching as WooBall came out on top 3-2. Sebastian Salado got Worcester out of the gate quickly with a first-inning RBI single. In the third Gavin Noriega broke a 1-1 tie with an RBI double and in the fifth Salado added another RBI single. New Britain got one back in the fifth, but Griffin O’Connor and Patrick Gallagher threw four scoreless innings to keep it the 3-2 score. Gallagher earned the save while starter Max LeBlanc picked up his third win of the season. The three combined for 15 strikeouts.

Nashua was the visitor to the HIP on Thursday, and the Silver Knights controlled the late innings to hand WooBall an 8-3 loss. Down three heading to the bottom of the third the Bravehearts would get two back on a Randy Flores RBI double and an infield out. In the fourth Worcester tied it on another infield groundout, but Nashua outscored the Bravehearts 5-0 the rest of the way for the win.

Worcester hosted the Pittsfield Suns on Friday and needed a late-inning comeback to come out on top 5-4. Finding themselves down a couple after half an inning WooBall got one back in the bottom of the second on an Andrew Selima RBI single, but the Suns answered right back in their next at-bat. In the fourth Nick Martin singled in a run to cut the deficit to one again, but in the seventh Pittsfield went back up by two. In the eighth, the Bravehearts struck three times to put the game in the win column. Gavin Noriega doubled and then scored on an error. Kenny Mallory Jr. added a second run on an RBI single, and then Mark Darakjy scored on a wild pitch. Dennis Colleran got the win, his first of the season.

Saturday’s game against Westfield was one Worcester would probably like to forget. They lost two leads and then surrendered 13 runs over the final two innings to get blown out of the HIP 18-10. WooBall got two home runs from Nick Martin and one each by Zach DeMattio and Matt Maloney, but while those will look good on highlight videos it really was an ugly loss for a team that needs wins.

The Bravehearts hosted Vermont Sunday, but defensive issues put WooBall in a hole they couldn’t climb out of in an 8-5 loss. Down one in the second Mark Darakjy tied the score on an RBI single, but the tie lasted just a half-inning as the Lake Monsters put up two in the next half. Lewis Barnum got WooBall back within one in the home half with a towering blast to left field. Vermont grabbed another run in the fifth, but a Randy Flores RBI double and a Sebastian Salado sacrifice fly knotted the score 4-4 after five.

In the seventh frame, Vermont scored four times and Worcester could only answer with a Gavin Noriega RBI single for the 8-5 loss.

210Sports’ Bravehearts of the week
Pitcher: Max LeBlanc is this week’s winner, earning a win while strking out eight over five innings.
Batter: Gavin Noriega gets the nod this week, going 8-24 with three doubles. He also walked five times and scored four runs.

This week’s opponents
Monday off
Tuesday vs Pittsfield, 6:30pm
Wednesday @ Brockton, 5pm
Thursday @ New Britain, 6:30pm
Friday @ Westfield, 6pm
Saturday vs Pittsfield, 6:30pm (Military Appreciation Night)
Sunday @ Brockton (DH), 1:30pm

Tickets to Bravehearts home games can be purchased online or by calling (508) 438-3773.

Around the FCBL
Vermont 4, @Brockton 3 (game 1, 7 innings)
@Brockton 12, Vermont 2 (gamme 2, 5 innings, mercy)
@Pittsfield 1, Norwich 0 (game 1, 7 innings)
@Pittsfield 4, Norwich 3 (game 2, 7 innings)

@Westfield 16, Pittsfield 6 (8 innings, mercy)
@Norwich 3, New Britain 2
@Vermont 3, Nashua 1 (7 innings, rain)

@Brockton 5, Norwich 2 (game 1, 7 innings)
Norwich 4, @Brockton 3 (game 2, 7 innings)
@Pittsfield 8, Westfield 4 (game 1, 7 innings)
@Pittsfield 3, Westfield 3 (game 2, 8 innings, PIT wins HRD 1-0)
@Vermont 6, Nashua 5

@Vermont 1, New Britain 0
@Norwich 12, Brockton 0
Pittsfield @ Westfield, ppd, rain

@Nashua 2, Westfield 1
Brockton 14, @Norwich 10
@Vermont 9, New Britain 1

Vermont 12, @New Britain 6 (game 1)
Vermont 10, @New Britain 9 (game 2, 7 innings)
Nashua 8, @Norwich 2
@Pittsfield 7, Brockton 2

New Britain 9, @Brockton 1
@Pittsfield 6, Norwich 4 (game 1, 7 innings)
@Pittsfield 15, Norwich 1 (game 2, 5 innings, mercy)
@Nashua 5, Westfield 3 (game 1, 7 innings)
@Nashua 6, Westfield 2 (game 2, 7 innings)

For frequent updates on the Worcester Bravehearts follow @210Darryl on twitter.

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