Senior duo leads North Attleborough to first D2 title
LOWELL — All season long, the senior tandem of Nick Sinacola and Zach DeMattio had North Attleborough baseball dreaming of making program history.
On Thursday night in the Division 2 final at LaLacheaur Park, their dream finally became a reality.
The righthanded Sinacola spun a complete-game gem, striking out nine and allowing four hits and two walks, while his man behind the plate, DeMattio, was responsible for driving in all of the Rocketeers runs as North Attleborough hoisted the program’s first ever state championship trophy with a 4-3 victory over Beverly.
“We have been on their backs pretty much all season,” said first-year North Attleboro coach Michael Hart. “There are a lot of guys who contribute, and have stepped up big time. But tonight, stick with your strengths and those two guys are our strengths right there.”
North Attleborough’s star seniors were quick to make their presence felt.
Sinacola knocked a one-out single in the top of the first inning against his counterpart, Spencer Brown, and, after Sinacola stole a base, DeMattio drove his classmate home with an RBI single to right field.
The righthanded Brown also delivered a complete-game effort on the mound with 10 strikeouts, but his kryptonite all evening was DeMattio at the dish.
A 5-foot-11, 225-pound catcher and linebacker on the the Red Rocketeers state finalist football team, DeMattio came to the plate with runners on the corners and nobody out in the third inning. He struck a two-run double into the left field gap to expand North Attleborough’s lead to 3-0.
The Red Rocketeers (22-2) tacked on another run in the fifth on a sacrifice fly to right field.
Beverly (20-5) didn’t get its first hit off Sinacola until Matt Collins got a two-out triple in the third inning. Sinacola kept the Panthers off the scoreboard when he struck out Brown.
Hitting from the left side of the plate, Brown got another opportunity to help his own cause and dig into Beverly’s 4-0 deficit when he came up with the bases loaded in the fifth inning.
This time, the senior came through — narrowly missing a game-tying grand slam by inches — as his bases-clearing RBI-triple banged off the left field wall.
Sinacola struck out the next batter, Nicholas Berry, to preserve North Attleborough’s one-run lead and closed the door on Beverly in the final two innings, preventing the Panthers from putting a baserunner aboard.
“Our whole lives we have been preparing for a moment like this, and to get in that dogpile, there is no better feeling,” said DeMattio.