Nashua Silver




Wolff Homers Twice, Knights Beat First Place Vermont

Photo: Kailey Lane/Nashua Silver Knights

Back-to-back wins for the Silver Knights gave Nashua’s boys of summer some momentum heading towards July. On the last day of June, the Knights headed up to Burlington, Vermont to take on the first place Lake Monsters. Nashua opened up their first of back-to-back games against Vermont with Eastern Connecticut’s Nolan Lincoln getting the start. Babson’s Tim Noone got the start for the Monsters, seeking his third win of the season.

After jumping out to leads in their past two games, Nashua now was on the receiving end of early run production. Wake Forest’s Tommy Hawke led off the bottom of the first with a single to get on base early. With Hawke advancing around the diamond on an error and a groundout, Virginia’s Harrison Didawick brought home the Demon Deacon on third with a sacrifice fly. After one, Vermont jumped out to a 1-0 lead.

A fast answer by Nashua’s offense was much needed to hang around with the dominant 24-6 Lake Monsters. In the top of the second, Boston College’s Kyle Wolff started off the inning with a single. A walk by Niagara's Brady Desjardins set up two runners on with only one out. Trying to keep the line moving, Maryland’s Zach Martin singled to center with Wolff holding up at third. Austin Peay’s Kyle Lavigne came up to bat with ducks on the pond. With just about any ball in play being enough to bring home a run, Lavigne grounded out but brought Wolff home in the process. With two innings in the books, both teams were even at 1-1.

With Nashua responding with a one run punch of their own, Vermont punched back even harder. In the bottom of the third, Kansas’s Cooper Kelly got another runner in scoring position for the Lake Monsters with a one out double. One hit by pitch later and Vermont now had two runners aboard with Harrison Didawick due up.  Being responsible for the first Vermont run, Harrison Didawick came back up to the plate with a chance to deliver once again. Before Didawick even got a chance to attack, a Nashua wild pitch brought around Kelly to score with the runner following him now on second. Didawick would work a seven pitch walk to bring up Clarkson’s Colby Brouilette.

Clarkson’s senior catcher would not waste any time in his at bat, singling on the second pitch and bringing home another Vermont run in the process. In a few short at bats, Vermont went from being tied to now having a two-run lead after three innings.

After a “seesaw” start to the game with back-and-forth scoring, both pitchers started to settle in with two scoreless frames after the third. While the box score says Lincoln gave up three earned runs, the Londonderry native did not pitch poorly. Lincoln only gave up four hits with four strikeouts in six and ⅔ innings, only running into trouble with walking batters and getting unlucky with wild pitches and errors.

Marching towards the backend of the ballgame, the Knights entered the sixth inning looking to revive their offense. After a quick out to start the inning, Vanderbilt’s Ray Velazquez singled to right field ahead of Kyle Wolff. With already one hit in the ballgame, the Boston College Eagle delivered his second hit of the game in huge fashion with a two-run shot to tie the ballgame. Wolff’s third homer of the game couldn’t have come at a better time, with the game now all even once again with three innings to go.

 A 1-2-3 inning by Vermont in the bottom of the sixth sent the Knights back up to the plate with Lavigne, D’Amato, and Musacchia due up. Leading off the seventh, Kyle Lavigne established Thursday night as “The Kyle Game” with a home run of his own. Lavigne’s solo shot was his first home run of the 2022 season and now gave Nashua their first lead of the game, 4-3.

Lincoln, coming out for his seventh inning, looked to help aid the Knights towards the W. After two quick outs by Vermont, Tuft’s Connor Bowman lined a double to keep the inning alive for the Lake Monsters. After a walk by Lincoln following Bowman’s at bat, the Eastern Connecticut junior’s night came to a close.

Clark’s Zach Gitschier came in to help the Knights try to get out of the jam. Gitschier has really settled in as Nashua’s “Get Out of Jail Free Card”, helping the Knights out in tough spots. In his last three outings, Gitschier has given up no earned runs with an even 1.00 WHIP in those three appearances. Continuing his hot streak, Zach got the third out on a flyout to end the inning scoff free.

Clinging to a one run lead, the Knights had two options: Cross their fingers and try to skate by with a one run lead or give their pitching staff some breathing room. Luckily, Nashua chose the latter. Ray Velazquez got aboard via a walk to start the eighth, with the scorching hot Kyle Wolff up next. After tying the game up for the Knights earlier in the game, Wolff hammered the nail in Vermont’s coffin with another two-run shot for his second homer of the game.

After Wolff silenced Vermont’s hopes of a comeback, things started to unravel for the Lake Monsters. Back-to-back walks following the homer resulted in three additional runs coming across for Nashua, just about locking things up for a Knights W.

Nashua locked down the victory stress free, getting their first win of the year against the first place Lake Monsters. Now winning three in a row, the Silver Knights are getting hot before their final game on the two game Vermont trip.

Nashua will face off against Vermont on Friday, looking to win their fourth in a row. First pitch is at 6:35 PM.