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Thea Hanscom keys strong middle innings for Amherst Mickey Mantle in win over South Hadley

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  • Amherst pitcher Liam Coughlin throws to first baseman Quentin Molitrno in a failed pickoff attempt of South Hadley runner Liam Quinn in the third inning of their Mickey Mantle League game on Ziomek Diamond in Amherst on Tuesday. South Hadley's Joe Meon, behind Couglin, takes a lead off third base. STAFF PHOTO / KEVIN GUTTING

  • Amherst pitcher Thea Hanscom warms up as she relieves starter Liam Coughlin, second from right, in the third inning of Amherst's 18-8 Mickey Mantle win over South Hadley on Ziomek Diamond in Amherst on Tuesday, July 9, 2019. —STAFF PHOTO / KEVIN GUTTING

  • , right, of Amherst leans back and lets South Hadley catcher John Sherwood contain an inside pitch by Pat Poirier in the fourth inning of Amherst's 18-8 Mickey Mantle win on Ziomek Diamond in Amherst on Tuesday, July 9, 2019. —STAFF PHOTO / KEVIN GUTTING

  • Thea Hanscom of Amherst hits a single in front of South Hadley catcher John Sherwood in the fourth inning of Amherst's 18-8 Mickey Mantle win on Ziomek Diamond in Amherst on Tuesday. STAFF PHOTO / KEVIN GUTTING

  • South Hadley third baseman John Sherwood, left, and second baseman Brady Nestor attempt a squeeze play on Amherst runner Matt Hanscom in the sixth inning of their Mickey Mantle League game on Ziomek Diamond in Amherst on Tuesday. Hanscom made it safely to second by diving into Nestor, pushing him backward onto the base and knocking the ball from his glove. STAFF PHOTO / KEVIN GUTTING

For the Gazette
Published: 7/9/2019 11:27:57 PM

AMHERST — The Amherst Mickey Mantle baseball team beat South Hadley 18-8 on Tuesday night at Amherst Regional.

Amherst jumped out to an early 5-0 lead before South Hadley tied the game in the third.

The Hurricanes regained the lead in the top of the fourth and held it behind Thea Hanscom. She singled then went to second on a Liam Coughlin walk. Both runners advanced on a wild pitch, and Emilio Didonna put Amherst ahead 6-5 with an RBI fielders choice. Matt Hanscom excended the lead to 7-5 with an RBI single.

Amherst coach Don Hodgkins then called on Thea Hanscom to relieve Coughlan, who started.

“She’s our most consistent pitcher. She almost never walks anybody.” Hodgkins said. “She pounds the zone, mixes it up. She’s got a great curveball, sneaky fast.”

Hanscom retired six straight batters and had two strikeouts en route to getting the win.

“It’s pretty awesome to do that,” Thea Hanscom said. “Our team was in a little bit of a bind there, so it was good to do that and help them out.”

The Hurricanes (7-3) started the scoring in the top of the first when Braeden Tudryn (hit, two walks) walked with one out, which led to Cole Boisvert (two hits, two walks) driving him in with a double for a 1-0 lead. Andrew Ciaglo then walked to put runners on first and second. Two batters later, Nate Mills (hit, walk) drove in Boisvert to make it 2-0. A sacrifice fly by Evan Dooley (two hits) drove in Ciaglo (two walks) for a third run before the end of the first.

In the third, South Hadley (0-13) trailed 5-1 before Henry Tran reached a one-out single, which brought up Joe Meon (two hits, two runs) who singled to put runners on first and second.

Liam Quinn (two hits) singled to drive in Tran to make it 5–2. Patrick Poirier (hit, two walks) followed suit with an RBI double, then Quinn made it 5-4 after reaching home on a wild pitch.

Poirier also came home on a passed ball in the third to tie the game at 5.

“For us it’s just one game at a time, trying to limit the mental errors,” McDermott said. “It’s making the plays you’re supposed to make and limiting the mental errors and trying to stay in the game.”

Amherst added three runs in the sixth after Logan Dapprich blasted a ball to center field for an inside-the-park-homerun to make it 11-5, scoring Coughlin and Matt Hanscom (hit).

“Our team hasn’t been hitting all too well and we finally put up a bunch of runs which was nice,” Dapprich said.”

In the bottom of the frame South Hadley struck back cutting into the Amherst lead as Poirier, Brady Mendoza (two walks) and John Sherwood (walk) scored after Tudryn walked them.

Amherst clung to a three-run lead at the start of the seventh but scored eight runs to ensure the final result.

While they won, it was not the most well-played game for Amherst, and Hodgkins acknowledged the work they have ahead of them if they want to compete in the playoffs.

“We’ve got to get a lot better,” Hodgkins said. “We’re not the greatest hitting team in the world, so we have to pitch and play the field well.”

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