Conard drops a double-digit decision to Simsbury, ending a seven-game win streak.
By Marlon Pitter
The Conard baseball team found itself on the losing end of an 11-0 contest in six innings against Simsbury on Wednesday afternoon in West Hartford.
A six-run rally by the Trojans with two outs propelled Simsbury (9-5) to an 11-0 lead heading into the bottom of the sixth inning, giving the Chieftains just one chance to score twice and keep the game alive due to the 10-run mercy rule.
Two Conard batters walked to get on base, but the Chieftains could not plate them to extend the contest.
“We had a really good batting practice today,” said Conard head coach Sanjay Rambhia. “I was pretty confident that we’d be able to hit [Simsbury pitcher Jack Donofrio], but it didn’t come through today. … I thought we were prepared. It just didn’t work out today.”
Donofrio pitched 5.2 innings – one out shy of completing the abbreviated game – and posted 12 strikeouts while allowing two hits and two walks. Anthony Carabello pitched four innings with four strikeouts, four walks, four hits allowed and three earned runs in his start for Conard.
Neither pitcher allowed a run until the fourth inning when Tate Valerio led off the frame with a solo home run to left field, putting the Trojans up 1-0. Simsbury plated two more on a walk with the bases loaded and a wild pitch that allowed a runner to score from third base.
The Trojans followed up with two more extra-base hits – a triple and a two-run home run – to take a 5-0 in the top of the fifth inning. The Chieftains returned in the bottom half with back-to-back bunt singles – breaking up Donofrio’s no-hitter – and loaded the bases with a walk but left all three runners on base.
After seeing their first two batters of the sixth inning retired, the Trojans strung together seven consecutive hits, scoring six runs and sealing the victory in one fewer inning.
Conard’s loss ends a seven-game winning streak for the team and drops its record to 10-5. The Chieftains will look to rebound on Saturday against Enfield with two days off after playing seven games in nine days.
“You’re not going to win many games when you have two bunt singles,” said Rambhia. “They hit the crap out of the ball. They did a nice job, kept us off balance. It is what it is. We just have to get back and regroup tomorrow.”
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