Newburyport (11-7) will face off against Triton (9-10) this afternoon for the sixth annual Bert Spofford Memorial Tournament championship after the Clippers took down Georgetown (12-7) in a 10-inning marathon yesterday 4-1.
“It was two teams that wanted it,” said Clippers coach Steve Malenfant. “It was your typical Georgetown/Newburyport game that we have seen in recent years. They played tough, we played tough.”
Pat Slack took the ball for the defending Division 4 state champion Royals on their home field and the right-hander took down the first three Clipper batters 1-2-3. Fellow right-handed senior Colby Morris took the mound for Newburyport and would start the bottom of the first inning by hitting leadoff batter Mike Goddu. But Goddu would be thrown out at third base on a ground out from CJ Ingraham and Tom Pingree would be caught at second to end the inning.
The second and third innings passed uneventfully as did the top of the fourth. Colby Ingraham started the bottom of the fourth off with a single that he stretched to a double on an overthrow to first. Pat Slack then plated Ingraham with a towering double out to left field that put the Royals on the board.
Ian Michaels and Colt Fontaine would send singles down the middle that chased Slack from the game in the top of the sixth inning. Dave Ingraham took the mound for the Royals next and would make a spectacular diving catch of a popped-up bunt from Brian Fiscone on his first pitch. Fontaine and Michaels stole second and third respectively, and Fontaine was sent home on a single from Morris to tie the game.
The seventh inning began with a single from Connor MacRae, who moved to second on a bunt bid from Ryan Furlong. An error at third base sent Chance Carpenter to first and MacRae to third before Michaels popped up to end the threat.