PITTSFIELD, Mass.- The Pittsfield Suns saw their regular season home opener come to a close with a 9-4 loss to the Worcester Bravehearts on Tuesday from a lively crowd at Wahconah Park. The Suns were unable to match the bats of the Bravehearts, as the ‘Hearts got things going early and often in their victory.
For Worcester, a two-run opening inning got them off on the right foot, as they look to maintain the fourth and final playoff spot in the FCBL. A two RBI double to deep left center field from the FCBL home run lead Zach Demattio gave Worcester the early 2-0 lead. A Cabot Maher sinlge would be the end of the first inning as Maher was thrown out trying to stretch his hit into extra bases, giving the Bravehearts momentum for the second inning, which they were able to take advantage of right away.
Buddy Mrowka opened the scoring in the second inning for Worcester, delivering an RBI single, which was followed by a double to center field from Cam Caraher to give Worcester the 4-0 lead. With Zach Demattio getting his second at bat of the night, he was able to be retired, but at a cost as a SAC fly would score another run for Worcester, their fifth of the inning to jump all over Pittsfield 7-0 through 1.5 innings of play. The Suns would come back with two runs of their own in the third off a two RBI single from right fielder Jake Blinstrub to cut Worcester’s deficit to 7-2.
The Bravehearts bats would not go away quietly, as they were able to score the two runs the Suns got in the bottom of the third into the top of the fourth when Matt Maloney hit a bloop two RBI single to give Worcester their seven-run lead back. Pittsfield would come back with one run of their own in the bottom of the 4th inning when Pittsfield native Jack Cooney hit a SAC fly, scoring his counter Pittsfield native Anton Lazits to give Pittsfield their third run of the ballgame.
Dominate pitching in the middle to late innings would be the name of the game as Chrisitan Womble would completely shut down the Bravhearts over 4.1 innings of work, Womble would give up just one hit and two walks while striking out eight Bravehearts. The combination of Ryan ODonnell, Tanner Smith and Matt Bean gave up no hits while walking four and striking out six combined Suns out of the bullpen to seal the deal for Worcester. The Suns late rally in the 9th came up short with the Suns only able to come up with one run out of the six they needed to extend the game to end the game with a final score of 9-4.
With the win, Worcester remains gains a game on the Westfield Starfires, who lost in Vermont on the night for the fourth and final playoff spot in the FCB. With the loss, the Suns lose ground on the second spot in the FCBL standings to the victorious Brockton Rox on the day. The Suns have locked up a playoff spot in the FCBL this season, as they did in 2019.