Melrose – Lexington used a six-run second inning to power its way to a 10-6 win over Melrose Thursday night at Morelli Field.
The victory evened the best of three semifinal series at 1-1. Game three is Friday night in Lexington with first pitch at 8:00 pm.
The first five Blue Sox batters in the second inning reached base via hit or walk with Matt Chatelle closing out the sequence with a three-run home to center, his first in a Blue Sox uniform. Andrew Selima started the rally with a double to right. Cam Meyer, who homered in game one, doubled down the leftfield line and the game was tied at 1-1. Mike Khoury walked, Alex Voitik singled to score Meyer and Chatelle went deep. Americans’ starter Ronnie Luke recorded two outs, but Dom Zaher drove one well over the fence in left for a solo home run and a 6-1 lead. It was Zaher’s third career postseason home run, all which have been hit at Morelli Field.
Lexington starter Robbie Cobb (1-0) benefited from the offensive outbreak. He gave up a first inning run on singles by Pat Costigan, John Jennings and with two outs Aidan Barry who drove in Costigan. Cobb stranded runners in the second and third innings before getting a 1-2-3 inning in the fourth. The fourth was part of six straight Melrose batters set down by Cobb before the Americans final broke through in the fifth.
With one out, Costigan (his second hit) singled, Jennings singled, Bright singled to score Costigan. Jennings scored on a wild pitch and Gianni Zarilli hit a sacrifice fly to right to make it 10-4. Barry’s double ended the night for Cobb. Sean Mahan came in and gave up a single to Scott Searles that scored Barry and it was 10-5.
Cobb pitched 4.2 innings, giving up 9 hits, 5 runs, no walks and three strikeouts. It was the second straight year he pitched in an elimination game for Lexington. He pitched in game three against Andre in last season’s semifinal series and went 4.2 innings, giving up 2 hits, an unearned run and struck out two.
Zaher lead the Blue Sox 11-hit attack by going 4-for-4 with 2 runs, 3 RBI, a double, and home run. He doubled in his only at bat in game one and now has five straight hits in two games.
Lexington added four more runs in the fourth to take a 10-1 lead. The Sox loaded the bases on a walk to Voitik, a single by Jesse McCullough and Ernie Little getting hit by a pitch. With two outs and Zaher at the plate the Blue Sox scored two runs on a ball that didn’t leave the infield. With the runners in motion Zaher hits a one-hop ground ball to short. Zarilli corrals it and throws to second for the third out. Because the runners were in motion with the pitch, Voitik scored easily from third, McCullough scores from second and Little ends up on third as he was past the bag when Melrose made the attempt for the force out. Zaher scores the 10th and final run on an error.
Following Cobb on the hill for Lexington was Sean Mahan, Borja Jones-Berasaluce and Manny Delcarmen. The trio combined to pitch 2.1 innings, giving up one hit, an unearned run, walked and struck out one batter.
Melrose starter Ronnie Luke (0-1) pitched 2 innings giving up 6 hits, 6 runs, walked and struck out one. Christian Loescher and Nick Colucci pitched the final five innings giving up 5 hits, 4 runs, walked 2 and struck out 6.
From the Stat Sheet – The teams combined for 22 hits and 16 runs a night after knocking out 25 hits and scoring 12 runs in game one. The two home runs by Lexington give them 20 home runs in 24 playoff games at Morelli.
Written by Bruce Hack, Lexington Media Relations Director
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