Melrose Americans

Melrose wins game one of Semifinal Series

Lexington – Melrose opened its semifinal series with a 7-5 road win over Lexington Wednesday night.
Game two of the series is Thursday night in Melrose with a 7:30 pm start time.
Down 4-2 in the top of the fifth the Americans scored three times to take the lead for good at 5-4.
John Jennings doubled to drive in Scott Searles (single) and Pat Costigan (single)to knot the score at 4-4. Jennings gave the Americans the lead when he scored on an RBI single by cleanup hitter Gianni Zarrilli.
Aidan Barry doubled to start the fifth. It was the fifth straight inning the Melrose leadoff hitter begin with a hit and the third time the hit was a double. Barry moved to third on an infield out and came home on a pinch-hit single by David Hunter for a 6-4 lead and an important insurance run.
There were three ties and three lead changes as the teams swapped runs in the first four innings. The second inning was the only one in which neither team scored.
Offense was in big supply as the teams combined for 12 runs, 25 hits, 7 doubles, and a home run. By the end of the third Lexington lead 4-2 and the teams had 15 hits between them.
Americans’ leadoff hits Costigan had three hits on the night and scored three times. He got the night started with a double in the first. Jennings infield single moved him to third and he scored on Cory Bright’s infield out for a 1-0 advantage.
Lexington struck back quickly in its half of the first.
Pete John went the opposite way and singled to left to start off the Blue Sox. Josue Feliciano followed with a bunt single and Julian Alvarez singled through the left side to load the bases with no outs. Andrew Selima delivered with a double to right plating John and Feliciano and it was 2-1 Sox.
The Americans answered in the top of the third. Costigan had a leadoff single and stole second to move into scoring position. With one out, Bright singled through the right side and drove in his second run of the game to tie it at 2-2.
Lexington replied quickly in the bottom of the frame. With 2 outs Selima singled to center. Cam Meyer drove a 3-1 pitch over the center field fence for his first post season home run that give the Blue Sox a 4-2 lead.
After falling behind 6-4 Lexington got within a run with another two-out no one on base rally in the sixth.
Meyer walked and then came all the way around to score on Dom Zaher’s double along the left field line that dropped in amongst the leftfield, shortstop and third baseman.
Melrose pushed the lead back to two runs with a run in the top of the seventh. Jack Beverly led off with a walk, the sixth American to reach base leading off the inning. He went to third on Scott Searles single to right and scored on a sacrifice fly by Hunter, for his second RBI of the game.
Starting pitchers Bobby Tramondozzi (Americans) and Jake Vesling (Blue Sox) took some bruises in the game. In the 10 combined innings pitched, six for Tramondozzi, they gave up 10 runs, 22 hits, walked one and struck out 11.
Tramondozzi earned the win, his first career postseason victory for Melrose. After being tagged for eight hits in the first three innings, he only gave up two over his last three innings. The Americans usual closer walked one and struck out seven.
Nick Colucci pitched a 1-2-3 seventh with two strikeouts for the save.
Vesling took the loss for Lexington, going four innings, 12 hits, 5 runs, no walks and a strikeout.
The Americans win was the first time a #1 seed had lost its opening playoff game since August 8, 2018 when Albrandis beat Lexington 5-2 in game one of the semis.
It was not a good night for the top seeds in the Intercity League playoffs as #2 seed Middlesex lost 6-5 to #3 Andre.
Since 2006 the #1 and #2 seeds had not lost their opening playoff game until Wednesday night.

Written by Bruce Hack, Lexington Blue Sox Director of Media Relations

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