LYNNFIELD — The self-professed “weirdos” will stay weird for another day as the Pentucket baseball team beat Lynnfield 3-1 to advance to the Division III North Semifinals.
Pentucket (15-8) fell behind 1-0 in the third inning before coming back with two runs in the top of the fifth. The Sachems added an insurance run in the sixth, and senior pitcher Ryan Kuchar took things from there, shutting down the Lynnfield (15-7) offense to get his team the big win.
“That’s a very good team. We knew that was going to be a battle and we just competed the whole way through,” Kuchar said. “You couldn’t have asked for better.”
Pitching on three days’ rest, Kuchar was masterful for the Sachems, going all seven innings while allowing just one run on three hits with six strikeouts and three walks.
Lynnfield scored its only run in the bottom of the third when Nick Pascucci drove in Greg Basilesco on a bloop single to center, but after that Kuchar went on to retire 12 of the next 14 Lynnfield batters, never giving the Pioneers a chance to get any kind of rally going again.
“You have to give Kuchar at ton of credit, pitching on three days’ rest,” said Pentucket coach Tom L’Italien. “He said to me the other day, ‘I want the ball.’ I don’t know a better competitor in the Cape Ann League, and I’m not knocking anyone else, but there’s not one other guy in the league who I’d rather have on the mound than him as far as we’re concerned, and there are some good guys in our league.”
Lynnfield pitcher Dave Johnson also performed well, pitching seven innings while allowing three runs on nine hits with two strikeouts and a walk.
The Sachems couldn’t get much of anything going early, and after John Sirios and Dylan Wright led off the top of the fourth with back-to-back base hits, Johnson was able to pitch out of the jam and strand the two runners in scoring position.