, Newburyport, MA

July 11, 2013

Rowley Rams looking to move to top of ITL standings

By Jim Sullivan

---- — The Rowley Rams (7-5-1) hosted Hamilton at Eiras Park last night, and didn’t give the Generals (6-8) a very warm welcome. The Rams won 7-0 behind a terrific performance from Rams starting pitcher Nick Liguori.

“It was really good offensively for us tonight,” said Rams coach Jeff Wood. “We’ve been in a rut. We haven’t been hitting the ball. We’ve been trying to do too much at the plate, I think, and I felt like tonight we took what they were given, went the other way with the ball, got on base.”

Hamilton started the top of the first inning of well when ,Jim Maloney grabbed a two-out walk before moving to third base on a single from Bryan Viltale. But Liguori got Avon Stewart to popup to send things into the bottom of the inning where Antony Conte hit a leadoff single off of Generals starting pitcher Jared Kefals. Conte moved quickly to third base on a passed ball and was plated for the Rams’ first run of the night by a C.J. Ingraham single past shortstop.

Cam D’Agostino walked to start the bottom of the second inning before taking second and third on a pair of wild pitches. Joe Esposito drew a walk next then stole second and made it to third on the overthrow that scored D’Agostino. Esposito then came in on a single to centerfield from Marco Luisi.

Dmitri Hunt started the bottom of the third inning with a single of his own, then stole second and reached third on a ground out from Kobe Thibault. Hunt then got gutsy during D’Agostino’s next at-bat and stole home for the Rams’ fourth run of the night.

Kefals walked the bases loaded in the bottom of the fourth inning, and things didn’t get any better for the right hander when Ingraham knocked in a run with a single and Hunt did the very same thing in the next at-bat, and so did Kobe Thibault.

Liguori found himself in a bit of a jam in the top of the fifth inning when Jim Love scorched a one-out single to right field then took second on a wild pitch. But Liguori was able to get the next two batters to pop up.

John Foster took to the mound for the Rams in the top of the sixth. Other than hitting Stewart with a pitch, he equated himself well, allowing no runs as catcher Drew Fecteau found himself catching a popup almost inside the Generals’ dugout along the way.

Left hander Joey Martin got some work on the mound as well in the top of the seventh and would only give up a single to Love to put a capper on the evening.

“(The Rams) put it together tonight,” said Viltale, who also coaches the Generals. “They’ve got a good squad, it looks like a lot of college kids. Woody has got them playing well and (the league) is a battle this year. There’s only two points separating everybody, so it’s really tight this year. And obviously tonight was a tough one.”

“This is what we need to do,” said Wood. “Tonight’s game is how we’re built to play. This is really how we should be playing. When you get pitching, and offense and defense it makes the game pretty fun and pretty easy. So, we’re back at it (in Hamilton) with these guys tomorrow night.”