WALTHAM — With Waltham down in the bottom of the seventh, 8-7, senior Ryan Williams stepped into the batter’s box ready to make amends.
Williams, who surrendered seven runs to start the game, smacked a triple into left field and sparked a two-run rally to complete Waltham’s 9-8 comeback victory over visiting Andover in the Division 1 North quarterfinals on Tuesday night.
“I started this game and I didn’t have my best stuff,” said Williams. “I thought it was over for us. But we have such a great team. Everybody picked me up when I was down and I think that really helped sparked me to hit that triple and score those last few runs.”
Waltham (14-7) advanced to play in the North semifinals on Wednesday night in Lowell.
Andover (13-8) jumped to a 7-1 lead after chasing Williams off the mound with four triples in the first three innings. A Waltham rally, highlighted by Joey Arsenault’s three-run triple, cut Andover’s lead to one run with two outs in the fourth.
The teams traded runs in the fifth and sixth innings before Williams’s triple put his team in position to at least tie the game. Billy Sameski singled home Williams, then moved to third on a single by Garrett Warren.
Nick Caliri hit a dribbling ground ball beyond the reach of the second baseman to end the game.
“My coaches just told me to breath, calm down and just take every pitch,” said Caliri. “Our captains did a great job of reminding us what a story it’d be if we came back. It ended up working out for us.”