06/20/2022 2:40 PM
LYNN, Mass. -- A pair of three-run innings lifted the Martha’s Vineyard Sharks to a 6-2 win over the North Shore Navigators in Monday’s matinee New England Collegiate Baseball League (NECBL) game at Fraser Field.
North Shore was unable to build upon its Sunday doubleheader sweep of Newport and fell to 3-10 on the season, while Martha’s Vineyard moved back to .500 at 6-6.
First baseman Jake Bullard (Stetson) and third baseman Trace Willhoite (Lipscomb) had two hits apiece to lead the North Shore offense. Bullard drove in a run, while Willhoite scored another.
The Navs drew first blood in the second inning after left fielder Nathan Blasick (West Virginia) hit a leadoff single to center, stole second and scored on Bullard’s single to right.
An inning later, Willhoite drew a leadoff walk and moved around the bases to double the home team’s lead to 2-0. The Navs’ third baseman moved up to third on center fielder Jarrett Ford’s (Dayton) single through the right side and scored on right fielder Jake McElroy’s (Holy Cross) fielder’s choice grounder to shortstop.
North Shore starter Luke Marshall (Stonehill) stranded five baserunners across the first three no-hit innings, but the Sharks pulled ahead for good with a three-run fourth.
After designated hitter John Giesler (Georgia Tech) was hit by a pitch and catcher Matthew Maloney (Dayton) singled, a balk scored the first Vineyard run and third baseman Michael Snyder (Washington) hit a go-ahead, two-run single over the head of the Navs’ Jake Gustin (Bryant) at second base.
The Sharks put the game out of reach with three runs in the eighth inning, beginning with a Maloney single. A bases-loaded walk and hit by pitch brought home runs, as did first baseman Ryan Nicholson’s (Cincinnati) fielder’s choice.
Marshall struck out seven across his five innings of two-hit ball. Nate Espelin (Dayton) and Max Tarlin (Endicott) both threw two scoreless innings out of the bullpen with three strikeouts.
Martha’s Vineyard’s Jacob Weaver (Austin Peay) and Rafe Schlesinger (Miami) earned the win and save, respectively. Snyder led the offense going 2-for-5 with two RBI.
The Navs and Sharks will complete a home-and-home series at 6:35 p.m. Tuesday in Oak Bluffs.