MILLBURY, Mass. - The Millbury Woolies chance for landing a spot in the MIAA baseball playoff tournament took a huge blow on Monday after the Douglas High School Tigers exploded for six runs in a pivotal fourth inning and beat Millbury 7-1.
Not much went right for Millbury on the day. Just the second batter of the game against Woolies starter Zach Richard, Tigers right fielder Blake rocketed a home run down the left field line. Douglas loaded the bases with one out but Richard pitched out of the jam.
The Woolies weren't able to mount much offense against Douglas starter Andrew Reed, who was also the recipient of two double plays. The second came when Millbury loaded the bases in the third with one out, but Reed got Luke Bernard to hit a hard grounder to third, the throw went home to get the lead runner and then to first to narrowly nip Bernard to end the inning.
Everything fell apart for Millbury in the fourth after a runner reached on a error. Richard got two quick outs which should have ended the inning, but Reed helped his own cause by blasting a homer in almost the exact same place as Reed to make it 3-0. Another error, a walk and a batter hit by a pitch loaded the bases. Foynes hit a deep triple to center clearing the bases. The throw at third sailed into the Millbury dugout allowing Foynes to score, and six unearned runs later it was 7-0.
Millbury finally broke through when Mike Valastro doubled home Bernard who led off with a single, but it was too little too late.
Millbury coach Ron Silvestri waxed philosophic after the game. "Tough loss. We needed that. But that one bad inning killed us again. You can't give up six unearned runs and expect to win, but we are finding we're getting some good young pitchers some experience."
Asked about their slim playoff chances, Silvestri smiled. "Three games left, there's no room for error now....tomorrow is another day."
The Woolies have three games left and must win all three to get into the tournament. Tomorrow's game is against Sutton. First pitch is at 3:30 p.m.