On Monday, the Muskrats visited Keene for the first time since matching up with them in a title bout last August. July 2nd kicked off the highly anticipated rematch week between the 2011 NECBL Championship participants and New Hampshire neighbors.
Keene looked just as strong as they did last summer, soundly defeating the Muskrats 9-2.
Sensing the personal importance of the budding in-state rivalry, Laconia specifically scheduled Matt Aldrich (Darton) to take the hill for this contest. The Muskrats staff was greatly in need of a quality start from a rotation pitcher.
Keene applied the pressure early to a wild Aldrich, who walked the game’s lead off batter. Nelson Ward (Georgia) would then take second on a wild pitch, and swipe third on his own. A Grant Kay (Iowa West) RBI single made it 1-0 Keene.
The Swamp Bats would capitalize on two walks and two wild pitches in the second, only managing one run as Aldrich battled back. But he could not hold the bats off in the fourth, as Keene struck for six runs and chased Aldrich from the game.
Tim Ponto (St. Joseph’s) came in to relieve Aldrich, promptly allowing an RBI sacrifice fly and back-to-back home runs for NECBL Player of the Week Frankie Schwindel (St. John’s) and Dylan Delacruz (CCSU).
Keene added another run on an RBI double for Austin Wheeler (Georgia) in the seventh. Laconia’s runs came on Regan Flaherty’s (Seminole CC) second home run in as many games, and an RBI groundout for the productive Vince Conde (Vanderbilt).
Laconia will host Sanford on Tuesday night at 6:30 PM. They welcome Keene back to Robbie Mills Field, the site of their 2011 NECBL Championship, for a 4th of July extravaganza, Wednesday at 5:00 PM.