Big Eighth Propels Mystic Past Navs in Season Opener

06/07/2022 8:34 PM

NORWICH, Conn. -- The Mystic Schooners scored five runs in the bottom of the eighth inning to overtake the North Shore Navigators for a 6-2 win in Tuesday night’s New England Collegiate Baseball League (NECBL) season opener at Dodd Stadium.

The North Shore offense was held to just four total hits. Right fielder Jake McElroy (Holy Cross) went 1-for-2 with a two-run single up the middle in the sixth inning.

Thanks to a caught stealing and a double play in back-to-back innings, Mystic’s Charlie McDaniel (Presbyterian) faced the minimum across his entire five-inning start. The southpaw allowed just one hit and one walk while striking out four North Shore batters.

Luke Marshall (Fairfield) got off to a similar start for North Shore, striking out five over four innings of two-hit ball. The Swampscott native worked around a pair of walks and an error in the second inning and stranded one runner in each of his other three frames.

The Navs were happy to see the home team’s bullpen when they came to bat for the top of the sixth, recording their first hit since second baseman Ty Dooley’s (Radford) leadoff single in the fourth. Third baseman Connor Bertsch (Dartmouth) got the offense up and running with a leadoff single before moving across the diamond on first baseman Jake Bullard’s (Stetson) fielder’s choice grounder and a subsequent error. 

Bertsch and Bullard helped to set the table for McElroy, the third-year Navigator who sent a two-run single through the middle to drive home the team’s first run of the season.

Mystic cut its deficit in half on third baseman Charlie Pagliarini’s (Fairfield) sacrifice fly to left field in the seventh, but North Shore reliever Timmy Kenney (Lehigh) stranded a runner in scoring position to keep it a 2-1 game.

The Schooners flipped the score for the first time in the eighth inning, scoring five unearned runs on just two hits while taking advantage of a pair of errors. First baseman Cole Singsank’s (High Point) two-run single through the right side highlighted the two-hit frame. 

North Shore southpaw Gannon Kadlecik (Radford) was charged with the loss after pitching the final inning. Earlier in the game, Cooper Smith (Stetson) followed Marshall out of the bullpen and tossed two scoreless frames.

Jared Burrows (Bryant) was the victor for Mystic, tossing two scoreless and hitless innings with three strikeouts. On the offensive side, left fielder Tristan McAlister (Mount St. Mary’s), Singsank and shortstop Stanton Leuthner (Stony Brook) all had multiple hits. McAlister score twice and drove in another run.

North Shore is set to conclude its opening two-game road trip on Wednesday night against the Ocean State Waves. First pitch will be thrown at 6:30 p.m. at Old Mountain Field in South Kingstown, R.I.