NHIAA Baseball: Sabers batter Milford
MILFORD — Bill Dod had one hope for his Souhegan High of Amherst baseball team as he sat watching his team warm up for Wednesday’s tilt with Milford.
“You know, it’d be really nice if we could score a little bit more today,” said Dod, whose club had scored 19 runs over its first three games.
The Sabers appeared to catch wind of their coach’s wish and responded with a 13-1 rout of the Spartans in five innings at Keyes Memorial Field. Souhegan (4-0) scored in each of the first four innings, including a seven-run third that helped them achieve the 10-run rule.
“We have a team that can put runs on the board,” Dod said. “We’ve had that one inning (every game) so far. We need to be more like we were today, where we were getting people on the first few innings, had them run the bases well and then get somebody to come up with the clutch hits.”
Every starter reached base at least once for the Sabers, who struck twice in the first inning, three times in the second and once in the fourth around their big third inning. Alec Burns paced Souhegan with three hits, three runs scored and three RBIs, of which two came on a mammoth home run in the fourth.
“Bryce (Reagan) and Owen (Batchelder) both got first-pitch curveballs in front of me,” Burns said. “As I got up there I was thinking, why not me, too? So then he throws the curve on the first pitch and I happened to get a good piece of it.”
It was the second homer in as many games for Burns, a junior who has verbally committed to play at Fairfield University. Burns missed a second homer by a couple feet later in the game, settling for an RBI single instead after stumbling over first base.
“Most of this can be contributed to my offseason work,” said Burns of his hot start.
“As a team we’ve practiced every Sunday, doing all the tee work, soft toss and front toss we could to get swings in. There’s a lot of reps there to go along with all the swings I took on my own, and it’s all paying off.”
Five other players contributed hits in Souhegan’s seven-run third, including a two-run triple from Batchelder and a two-run single from Ryan Hill. Hill finished with four RBIs while Daniel Trzepacz knocked in a pair.
Milford (1-1) picked up its only run on a Ricky DeBernardo RBI single in the third.
Batchelder and Davis Biddle combined on a three-hitter. Batchelder earned the win with four innings of one-run ball with eight strikeouts.
It was by no means Batchelder’s sharpest outing as he walked five, but he got outs when he needed to. Three of the seven runners Batchelder stranded came in the third, where he forced Milford to leave the bases loaded following DeBernardo’s hit.
“Owen’s getting better and continues to move forward,” Dod said. “He’s capable of better than that and this is only his second performance. But it’s good and it’s a W.”