After a Saturday rainout at home, the Silver Knights’ third game of the 2022 campaign would come in Brockton, MA. Nashua, looking to get their second win of the year, was set to face the red-hot Rox.
Assumption College’s Shea Ryan toed the rubber for the Knights as Nashua got their first taste of Brockton’s star-studded lineup full of sons of MLB legends. Jaden Sheffield, D’Angelo Ortiz, and Manny Ramirez, Jr. fill the meat of the lineup for the 2022 Rox. With names like these, Ryan’s first start of the season wasn’t going to be an easy one. Despite giving up 10 hits, Ryan only gave up three earned runs while tallying five strikeouts in five and two-thirds innings of work.
On the other side of the frame, the Silver Knights could not find an answer for Triton College’s Sebastian Bentz. Bentz, in five innings pitched, shutout the Knights and held them to three hits. Bentz struck out six and walked one to cap off a successful debut for his 2022 FCBL season.
After five innings of being kept scoreless, Nashua broke the seal and knotted the game up at two apiece. University of Pittsburgh’s Matt Travisano brought a run home via sacrifice fly while Anna Maria’s James Powers came home soon after due to an error to tie up the ballgame in the top of the sixth.
After coasting for most of the ballgame, the Rox kicked it back into ignition after Nashua’s two-run answer. Brockton added one in the sixth, two in the seventh, and one more in the eighth to give them a 6-2 lead heading to the ninth. Sacred Heart University’s Ryan Donnelly broke the tie with a RBI single, Tallahassee Community College’s Manny Ramirez Jr. let his presence be known with a two-run blast, and Dyersburg State Community College’s Andy Martin gave Brockton some insurance with an RBI single.
Heading into the ninth down four, the Silver Knights had their backs against the wall. But while Brockton began to think about their postgame meals and their next matchup, Nashua had other plans. Rally-inducing singles by St. Thomas Aquinas College’s Andrew Jemison and UMass’ Will MacLean set the table for the Knights. A Rox error then brought home the first Nashua run of the inning.
Stuck at 3-6 with the bases loaded, the pressure was now on the shoulders of Colby College’s Pat McConnell. When Nashua needed him the most, McConnell delivered with a two RBI single for his first hit of the game to make it 5-6. Now at a one run deficit, Brockton committed another fielding error which brought another Knight home to tie the ballgame and complete a remarkable comeback.
After an inning full of clutch hitting, unexpected errors, and a bit of luck on their side, Nashua looked to push this rollercoaster of a game to extra innings.
But in the bottom of the ninth, the magic started to wear off. After two quick strikeouts by Clark University’s Zach Gitschier, errors and passed balls left the door open for the Rox offense. St. Thomas Aquinas College’s Eric Volpi was up to the plate. Gitschier worked Volpi to a 2-2 count but with one swing of the bat, the clock had struck midnight for Nashua’s Cinderella comeback.
Volpi launched a three-run home run to give the Rox the 9-6 victory. Brockton’s walk off win keeps them undefeated at 3-0, as Nashua moves to 1-2 on the year.
Nashua will look to get back on track at home with the Westfield Starfires coming into Historic Holman Stadium for a Memorial Day matchup at 1:00 PM.