Worcester, who absorb a 15-1 loss to the Lake Monsters, need victory at home to force a third game in the semifinals
The Lake Monsters showed Saturday night how they tore through the Futures Collegiate Baseball League through this summer’s regular season.
Vermont beat Bravehearts starter Bryce Afthim for two races in the first round and six more in the second while scoring a 15-2 victory in Game 1 of the best of three FCBL semifinal series at Centennial Field in Burlington, Vermont.
If Worcester, with its fourth seeding, is to advance to its eighth championship series in a row, it must stop the Lake Monsters at 5pm on Sunday at Hanover Insurance Park at Fitton Field. Sunday must be a new day for Bravehearts.
After Worcester stranded runners in the first and third innings, after singles by Lewis Barnum and Gavin Noriega, Vermont went to work.
The Lake Monsters, who went 42-24 during the regular season to set the pace in the FCBL in their first year, led by just two of their hits. Tyler Favretto went, Jimmy Evans doubled, and just like that it was 1-0. Two hits later, Colby Brouillette doubled for a two-run edge.
Afthim went three in all and retired only one hitter in the other. Michael Bean from Auburn relieved him and left an inherited runner a score. He stranded the bases loaded, but then it was 8-0 Vermont.
In the fourth round, Andrew Selima, who knocked in both Bravehearts races, got Worcester on the board with an RBI double, and drove in Zach DeMattio.
The Lake Monsters added another earned run off Bean in the fifth to restore the lead in eight races. Bravehearts made three mistakes at night.
Bean delivered a good performance in long relief, knocking out six and allowing only two earned runs in five innings, but Vermont let go during his final inning of the work. Lake Monsters padded six more races by Bean, Will Jones and Julian Gonzalez in the seventh.
Selima’s sacrificial aircraft in the ninth finished the scoring.
Greyhound lands Pitcher of Year
Assumption University’s right-hander Patrick Harrington was named the Futures Collegiate Baseball League’s Pitcher of the Year after having a great season for the Vermont Lake Monsters.
Harrington led FCBL in the ERA (2.32), innings beat (62) and finished second in strikeouts (62) while going 5-2 for the Lake Monsters, the current season champions. He made 12 appearances, 11 of them starting.
At Assumption last spring, Harrington, a 6-foot 1, 205-pound native of Bedford, New Hampshire, was 0-3 with three saves on 19-2 / 3 innings over nine appearances, seven in relief.