Bristol Blues heat up: Win 5 out of 6 games

Brandon Miller gets ahold of a ball during a recent Bristol Blues game. The outfielder is pacing the Blues with a .405 batting average.

By KEVIN ROBERTS

STAFF WRITER

The Bristol Blues won five of their six games last week and improved to 13-11 entering this week’s games. The Blues find themselves in third place in the FCBL, one game behind the second place Brockton Rox.

Dominic Niman (West Hartford) picked up another win to improve to 5-0 on the season, Will Nowak (South Windsor) garnered his sixth save, and Southington native Wes Lahey was credited with his first win as a Bristol Blue.

Here’s what happened last week:

Blues 7, Knights 2

JUNE 24—Bristol scored a pair of runs in the sixth, seventh and ninth innings to pull away from Nashua in New Hampshire.

Buddy Dewaine (Uncasville) went 3-for-5 with a triple, two runs scored and an RBI for the Blues, who had 13 hits. Austin White (Glastonbury) was 2-for-4 with a triple, walk, run scored and RBI while Dylan Reynolds (Hamden) went 2-for-4 with a walk, run scored and RBI. Will Reiner (Madison) was 2-for-5 with a double, run scored and an RBI.

James Judenis (Wallingford) started, pitched the first six innings and took the win to improve to 1-0 in four starts. He gave up two runs (both earned) on four hits, struck out four and walked three. Tommy Hughes (Newington) tossed two scoreless innings with two strikeouts while Christian Seelhorst (Glenshaw, Penn.) pitched a scoreless ninth and struck out three against one walk.

Blues 7, Bravehearts 3

JUNE 25—Lahey picked up the win in relief for Bristol against Worcester in Massachusetts.

The former St. Paul standout pitched 1.2 innings, gave up a run on two hits, struck out one and hit one on 39 pitches, including 23 strikes.

Zeke Diamond (Sandy Springs, Ga.) was 3-for-5 while Sam Loda (East Haven) was 2-for-4 with a double, hit by pitch and two runs scored. Brandon Miller (Easton, Penn.) tripled and drove in two runs while Kasey Bass (Sun Prairie, Wisc.) singled, scored a run and drove in two runs. Danny Roth (West Hartford) tripled, stole a base, scored two runs and drove in another.

After Lahey pitched in relief of starter Arjun Thakar (Sugar Land, Texas), Matt Shane (Colchester) tossed a scoreless frame. Tim Pfaffenbichler (Windsor Locks) threw the final two innings, struck out two and walked two.

Blues 16, Navigators 10

JUNE 26—Bristol erupted for 18 hits, including the team’s first home runs of the season, in a slugfest against North Shore in Lynn, Mass.

Parker Upton (Grand Island, Neb.) smacked a two-run home run in the top of the fifth inning. Upton also singled, scored twice and drove in three runs. Diamond homered to lead off the sixth inning. Diamond had a big night, going 5-for-6 with four runs scored. Miller went 3-for-4 with two stolen bases and a run scored. White tripled twice, walked, scored three runs and drove in two runs. Jordan Laske (Wethersfield) had two singles, a run scored and an RBI while Roth tripled, walked twice, scored two runs and drove in another. Dewaine and Reynolds each had a single, two walks, a run scored and an RBI.

Ryan Lauk (Mullica Hill, N.J.) pitched the first seven innings and picked up the win. He gave up three runs (all earned) on five hits, struck out five, walked one and improved his record to 2-1.

Blues 11, Knights 3

JUNE 28—Backed by a strong offensive effort, Mark Faello (Plainview, N.Y.) pitched 6.2 innings and improved his record to 3-0 in the win over Nashua in New Hampshire.

Faello gave up three runs (two earned) on six hits, struck out five and walked three. Niman pitched 1.2 innings in relief and fanned three.

Reiner was 3-for-4 with a triple, walk, run scored and three RBI. Reynolds went 2-for-5 with two runs scored while White was 2-for-5 with a stolen base, run scored and RBI. Upton singled, walked, stole three bases, scored two runs and drove in two more. Diamond had a double, sacrifice fly, run scored and two RBI while Dewaine added a single, walk, sacrifice fly, two runs scored and RBI.

Bravehearts 9, Blues 6

JUNE 29—Bristol’s eight-game winning streak ended in the loss to Worcester in Massachusetts.

Cam Van Hoorebeke (West Chester, Penn.) started, was the losing pitcher, and saw his record fall to 1-2. Lahey pitched 1.2 innings of relief and gave up an unearned run on two hits to go along with a strikeout and a walk.

Miller was 4-for-4 with a home run, hit by pitch, stolen base, run scored and two RBI. Dewaine went 2-for-4 with a sacrifice fly, run scored and two RBI while Diamond and Bass each added an RBI.

Blues 5, Navigators 3

JUNE 30—Bristol was immediately back on the right track the next night with a win over North Shore in Lynn, Mass.

Miller’s two-out, three-run double in the seventh inning scored White, Laske and Diamond for a 5-3 lead. Miller finished 2-for-5 while Diamond was 2-for-5 with a walk and two runs scored. White went 2-for-3 with two walks, a stolen base, run scored and RBI while JT Mounce (Cypress, Texas) doubled, scored a run and drove in another.

Niman was the winning pitcher with 1.1 innings (1 strikeout, 1 walk) of scoreless relief. Nowak threw 1.2 innings of scoreless relief and struck out two on his way to the save.

Up next: Bristol plays a game every day this week, with just one away from Muzzy Field. The Blues started at home on Monday against Nashua, then traveled to Pittsfield, Mass., on Tuesday to play the Suns. Bristol was scheduled to host North Shore on Wednesday and the Brockton Rox on Thursday. The Blues play Worcester on Friday and Pittsfield on Saturday, with each game scheduled for 7 p.m. Bristol hosts North Shore on Sunday at 6 p.m.

To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Kevin Roberts, email him at KRoberts@SouthingtonObserver.com