BROCKTON — The start of Monday night’s game was all too familiar for Lincoln-Sudbury coach Kirk Fredericks.
Warriors senior starting pitcher Alex Wieland walked two of the first three batters he faced, bringing back memories of Thursday’s first-round 19-4 loss to Bridgewater-Raynham, in which the pitching staff struggled mightily.
So Fredericks went to his bullpen early and it paid off, as sophomore Ian Herel retired the next two batters and Lincoln-Sudbury went on to top Silver Lake, 11-4, in the loser’s bracket of the Super 8 at Campanelli Stadium.
“In the Bridgewater-Raynham game, our pitchers didn’t give us a chance to win the game,” Fredericks said, “and Alex walked the first two guys so we’re going to give someone else a shot to give us a chance to win the game.”
The Warriors (20-5) move on to play Braintree on Thursday in the next round of the loser’s bracket. With the loss, the Lakers (20-5) were eliminated.
Senior Sid Warrenbrand knocked in three runs and was one of five Lincoln-Sudbury pitchers used in the win.
The Warriors led, 5-3, late before scoring three times in the eighth and three more times in the ninth to pull away in a game in which they never trailed.
Senior Sam Colello went 2 for 4 in the leadoff spot with three runs scored and an RBI.
Leading, 2-1, in the fifth, Lincoln-Sudbury loaded the bases with one out when junior Ryan Berardino drilled a line drive under the first baseman’s mitt to bring home Colello to push the lead to two. Two batters later, Warrenbrand bounced a grounder through the left side to plate two more and make it a 5-1 advantage.
Silver Lake came back in the bottom of the frame to load the bases with nobody out. Sophomore Anthony Videtto brought in a run on fielder’s choice to make it three-run deficit, and after Thomas Novick fanned senior Josh O’Neill, junior Adam Gay reached on an error, bringing home a run to make it 5-3.
The Warriors allowed just four hits despite working out of the bullpen almost right out of the gate. Junior Gino Fordiani pitched the final four innings, allowing just one run and fanning six.
Warrenbrand put Lincoln-Sudbury on top, 1-0, in the second inning. After Berardino was hit by a pitch to start the inning and stole second, Warrenbrand lined a grounder to the hole between first and second that ricocheted off diving Silver Lake first baseman Videtto’s glove and rolled into right field to plate Berardino.
Braintree 5, St. John’s Prep 4 — For two consecutive days, Braintree was facing elimination in the Super 8 tournament against a very strong opponent from the Catholic Conference.
After eliminating Catholic Memorial Sunday with a strong offensive display of 11 runs, the Wamps turned to pitching and defense to eliminate second-seeded St. John’s Prep (Catholic Conference champion) at Campanelli Stadium in Brockton.
Fifth-seeded Braintree (19-4) advanced in the loser’s bracket and moved to within three wins of the state title.
The Wamps got a quality start by junior Bobby McNiff on short rest. McNiff went 6⅔ innings, giving up three runs on nine hits with five strikeouts, allowing only one walk. He threw 98 pitches, 62 strikes, and had 20 of 27 first-pitch strikes.
Senior captain Matthew Bickford, who had a two-run triple in the third, earned the save, getting the last seven outs. The Braintree defense was flawless and didn’t commit an error.
“We took advantage by getting runners on base and got timely hitting and great pitching and that is how we scripted it and thankfully it worked out,” said Braintree coach William O’Connell.
St. John’s Prep (17-6) also got fine pitching from senior Evan Roberts, who worked a complete game, throwing 111 pitches. Unfortunately for Roberts, he hit three batters, two of whom scored, he allowed a two-run homer to Connor Columbus, and the defense committed three errors that led to an unearned run.
The Eagles' offense was 3 for 13 with runners in scoring position.
“A couple of errors, and a couple of execution things that we couldn’t execute hurt us, but we didn’t give up and [we] came back,” said St. John’s Prep coach Dan Letarte.