LYNN — Manchester Essex took control of Saturday’s Division 4 North baseball final without even swinging the bat.
In the bottom of the first inning, Manchester Essex drew seven walks, five with the the bases-loaded. And when the Hornets finally got a pitch to hit, Luke Leavitt did not miss.
The senior roped a bases-clearing double to right field, punctuating an eight-run first inning as the third-seeded Hornets cruised to a 16-0 win Boston English at Fraser Field.
Manchester Essex (18-5) will play the winner of Sunday’s D4 South final between St. John Paul/Abington in a state semifinal Tuesday at Campanelli Stadium.
“The weird thing is yesterday Luke and I were talking about how we couldn’t find holes,” Manchester Essex coach B.J. Weed said. “I said we were due for a big game and that’s what happened.”
Freshman lefty Kellan Heney tossed six shutout innings, while Leavitt (3 for 4, 5 RBI, 2 runs) paced the offense from the leadoff spot. Bennett O’Leary (3 for 4, 2 runs, RBI) and Gavin Glass (2 for 4, 4 runs, 2 RBIs) sparked a 5-run fifth inning for a 16-0 lead.
“This is going to be the best thing to ever happen to me in my baseball career,” Leavitt said. “ I can’t even put it in words.”