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The Masco Messenger

The Masco Messenger

The Masco Messenger


Masco Huddles as a Team Prior to First Game Against Methuen

  In their first game of the season, the Masco Baseball team crushed Methuen 9-0. This performance was led by a strong offensive output and a dominant pitching performance by senior ace Paul Donnelly. 

  Masco’s bats were hot throughout the game and early in the first inning as junior Chris Porfido would get his first of two runs batted in (RBI) in the game to get the scoring going for Masco. 

  Supporting a two run lead, Donnelly walked to the rubber in the second, feeling as confident as ever.

  “It feels great whenever you are able to go out to the mound after getting a lot of run support from your team,” said Donnelly. “The run support in this game was unbelievable with us putting up nine runs, and it gave me a lot of confidence and allowed me to relax on the mound and just play my game.”

  Donnelly would pick up where the offense left off, retiring the next nine batters to keep the game scoreless going into the fifth. 

  “Donnelly’s performance was huge for us,” said assistant coach Bryan Duplissie. “We stress to our pitchers about throwing strikes. When you throw strikes, good things happen. Your teammates remain active in the game and it keeps a good flow to the game. Donnelly got a lot of one or two pitch outs, which keeps his pitch count down and the momentum in our favor.”

  For the Chieftains’ offense, they would not miss a beat, scoring a run in each of the first 5 innings.  

  Masco proved to be extremely effective with getting balls in play in nearly every at-bat, forcing the Rangers to make plays defensively. 

  This bat-to-ball mentality would lead to the Chieftains to put up many more runs throughout the contest.

  Senior Ryan Corcoran would lead the charge for the Chieftains’ offense throughout the day, going three for four in the contest with three RBI’s. Corcoran put up his RBI’s on a single in the second, and plated two more runs with another single in the bottom of the fifth to put the Chieftains up 9-0. 

  “Starting the season with a big offensive game means a lot for us,” said Corcoran. “It shows us that we can provide run support for whoever is pitching that game, and it allows us to play more freely without worrying about making mistakes.”

  In addition to the many hits that the Chieftains got throughout the contest, the outs that the Chieftains recorded while at bat were often effective outs. In the bottom of the third inning, following a double by sophomore Davis DeLuties that put runners on second and third, senior Chase Caron hit a sac fly that scored  Porfido from third to put the Chieftains up 4-0 after three innings.

 In the fourth inning, the theme of situational hitting would continue. Following a double by senior Gabe Fales that plated another Masco run, Masco had runners on second and third for Porfido, who again put the ball in play, allowing senior Tyler Feldberg to score, making it 6-0 at the end of four. 

  “Situational hitting is a big part of our program,” said Duplissie.  From day one, we focus on the little things and stress fundamentals like base-running and moving guys along when we have runners on base.

  The theme of situational awareness and baseball IQ did not stop at the plate but also continued on the mound. In the top of the fifth inning, with the Chieftains already supporting a 6-0 lead, Donnelly surrendered a base hit to begin the inning. But, with Donnelly being a left-handed pitcher and having a clear view of the runner at first, he elected to try and pick the runner off. 

  “Typically I like to use the pickoff to either take a guy off the basepaths completely, or even just to keep them close to first base,” said Donnelly. “[Having the pickoff move] gives me peace of mind knowing that the runner won’t take off on me and try to steal second. Keeping the runner close to the bag at first allows me to throw whatever pitch I want.” 

  Donnelly’s pickoff attempt, which was the second attempt that he would make in the at-bat, would prove to be successful, as he was able to fool the runner with his eyes to get the runner.This attempt was just one of his many highlights in a game that saw him strikeout 6 batters over 5 and ⅔ innings in a game where he would only allow 2 hits.  

  Masco proved their base running prowess on this day, as they were able to take advantage of Methuen miscues, stealing many bases in the win including a steal of home in the fifth inning by DeLuties to put the Chieftains up 7-0 in the bottom of the fifth.

  “We pride ourselves on our base running, especially early in the season to try and catch our opponents off guard and earn an extra base,” said Corcoran. “We always try to be aggressive and force the other team to make difficult plays.”

  After the Chieftains’ dominating performance, they look to their next match-up wh

ich will take place on Friday, April 5 against Beverly at 4.

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