Tyler Normandie’s first appearance in the starting lineup in nearly a month ended with him receiving a water shower from his teammates on the infield dirt.
The Central Catholic utility player lined a walk-off single to center field in the bottom of the seventh inning, propelling the No. 12 Raiders to a 4-3 win over North Andover Wednesday at Northern Essex Community College in Haverhill.
“Tyler missed almost three full weeks with injury and we really needed him today,” said Central coach John Sexton. “He might be our most versatile player and he’s a good aggressive hitter. It was good to get him back.”
Central (11-5) battled back twice against North Andover ace Ryan Griffin, who shut the Raiders down two weeks ago in a 1-0 defeat. The Raiders fell behind 1-0 in the second, but responded in the home half of the frame on an RBI double by Brady Rickenbach.
Then, trailing 3-1 in the fourth, Nathan Kearney lined a two-run single to center with two outs to tie the score.
Lefthander Lukasz Rondeau earned the win in relief, allowing just one hit in three innings to give Central’s bats one last chance in the seventh.
No. 6 North Andover (11-4) had won nine straight. Their lead in the Merrimack Valley Conference Division 1 race now sits at one game over Central.
“I like that we fought and battled back,” said Sexton. “When they went ahead it would have been easy to say this would be tough. But we fought back and got the win.”
Apponequet 7, East Bridgewater 6 — Nate Levesque struck out five with no earned runs across four innings, and drove in two runs at the plate, and Liam MacPhail added a two-run knock to push the Lakers (11-6) to an extra innings nonleague win.
Arlington 16, Wilmington 0 — Josh Garner (3 for 4, 5 RBIs) homered and Zach Zimmerman (3 strikeouts, 1 walk) allowed three hits over five innings to lead the Spy Ponders (14-3) to a Middlesex League win.
Austin Prep 12, Bishop Stang 0 — Jack Iannibelli yielded one hit over five innings, and Dom Gabardi belted a first-inning grand slam to power the top-ranked Cougars (17-0) to the Catholic Central Cup title in Reading over the No. 14 Spartans (11-4).
Bishop Feehan 4, St. Mary’s 3 — Jake Rosati allowed three hits over 4 1/3 innings, and drove in Brett McCaffery on a line drive up the middle to secure a walkoff win for the Shamrocks (12-5). Sean Stephenson and Billy Roche each launched solo home runs in the Catholic Central League victory.
Bridgewater-Raynham 6, Durfee 5 — Luke Barry (3 strikeouts) allowed no earned runs over seven innings, and Cam Morrison (2 for 4) and Kevin Doyle (2 for 4) drove in two runs apiece to power the Trojans (12-4) to a Southeast Conference win.
Brookline 7, Wellesley 4 — Jack Martel (3 for 4) earned a complete-game win on the mound, and Danny Villa (3 for 3) knocked in three runs and scored two to drive the Warriors (6-12) to a Bay State Conference victory.
Catholic Memorial 3, St. John’s (Shrewsbury) 1 — Nick DiRito went the distance for the win, yielding no earned runs, contributed three hits at the plate, and Scott Longo delivered a sacrifice fly for a run in the seventh to lift the Knights (11-5) to the Catholic Conference in Shrewsbury.
Dedham 14, Dover-Sherborn 13 — Matt Lombardi’s leadoff triple in the eighth set up a walkoff single by Pat Lyman to give the Marauders (10-6) the edge in a high-scoring Tri-Valley League affair.
Franklin 12, Milford 0 — James Kuczmiec threw a two-hit shutout as the No. 4 Panthers (15-3) clinched at least a share of the Hockomock’s Kelley-Rex title.
King Philip 15, Attleboro 1 — Quin Garstka struck out five with no earned runs across four innings, and Shawn Legere (2 hits) drove in three runs to lead the Warriors (12-6) to a Hockomock League five-inning win.
Lawrence Academy 8, Rivers 4 — Senior Jack McLaughlin struck out 13 and allowed no runs over six innings to propel Lawrence Academy (11-3-1) to the ISL win.
Milton 9, Walpole 1 — Brian Foley struck out nine and allowed three hits across six innings to improve to 6-0 on the year, and Owen McHugh (2 for 4, 1 RBI) notched two strikeouts in one inning of relief to help the No. 2 Wildcats (15-2) capture the Bay State Herget Division championship for the second year in a row.
North Attleborough 6, Stoughton 3 — Tyler Bannon (9 strikeouts) allowed four hits in a complete-game win, and Tyler DeMattio (2 hits) plated two runs to help the Red Rocketeers (12-4, 11-2) capture the Hockomock Davenport Division title.
Norwell 16, Excel Academy 1 — Coach Tom Jacobs earned his 200th career win off key offensive performances from Colin Gibbons and John Laura in a nonleague clash for the Clippers (8-7).
Whitman-Hanson 7, Silver Lake 2 — Ethan Smith (3 strikeouts) allowed five hits and drove in a run to lead the Panthers (7-9) to a Patriot League win.
Correspondents Joseph Pohoryles and Vitoria Poejo contributed to this report.