BOXFORD — Three career games was all Alana Delisle needed to register a rare pitching double.
The Amesbury freshman allowed one run before being relieved with a six-run lead through four innings, but Delisle was forced back to the mound to get the final out of an 8-7 victory over Masconomet.
The first four innings earned Delisle her second pitching victory and despite allowing a bases-clearing double to the first Chieftain she faced in the seventh, she also picked up her first save with a three-pitch punch out of the next.
“That’s never happened,” Delisle said of her winning-and-saving day. “Honestly, I had confidence in my team, and I knew we could do it. Masco is good – they’re really good, actually – but I had confidence we would come together at the end.”
The Indians had things their way through six, taking advantage of a four-run first to open an immediate lead. Lead-off batter Emily DiPietro registered the first of her three hits then stole the first two of her five bases before scoring the first of her three runs on a Delisle grounder turned error.
Singles by freshmen Olivia DeLong and Ella Bezanson sandwiched an Emma Catania sacrifice fly before Amesbury wrapped up the first with a run-scoring single by Olivia Levasseur and a ground out by Julia Campbell.
“Today was the best (of the year) for the whole order, and everybody was hitting,” DiPietro said. “The first two games were really the middle of the order that was hitting for us, but the top of the order really came through for us today. But we need that for these types of games where (the opponent) comes back like that.”
Amesbury added two in the third when freshman Levasseur drove in Bezanson before scoring on a Meghan McElaney groundout. In the fourth, it was a Delisle ground ball that plated DiPietro for a 7-0 lead.
The Chieftains used three singles and a ground out to get to Delisle for a run in the bottom of the fourth. Delisle then gave way to Emily O’Donnell, who struck out four in the fifth and sixth before control problems sparked a Masconomet rally.
An Amesbury sixth that saw DiPietro double and score on Delong’s single proved crucial as the Chieftains took advantage of three walks, a hit batter and two singles to plate three. Ashley Hamson greeted Delisle with a hard-hit double to right center to make the score 8-7.
But the freshman caught the next batter looking to end the panic. Delisle and her fellow freshmen obviously are expected to play big roles on a team that returned six starters from a Division 3 North finalist squad. The freshmen fill four of the first six spots in the lineup while DeLong and Levasseau hold down the corners of the infield and Bezanson runs the outfield from her spot in center.
“Honestly, we just wanted to have fun and play,” Delisle said about the youngsters’ attitudes entering the season. “We’ve all been together for a long time, so we just wanted to keep having fun and play. There is always pressure coming into a good program. Everyone playing here is really good and they know what they’re doing, so we all had to work really hard.”
Handing Masconomet its first loss of the season, the Freshmen Four went 7 for 15 with four runs and four runs batted in.
“We’ve never really had that many freshmen who know how to play the game this well,” said the senior DiPietro, who had five of Amesbury’s seven steals. “There are still some rookie mistakes, but everyone picks them up. They work really well with us, and they’ve really helped our team this year.”
Amesbury 8, Masconomet 7
Amesbury (8): Emma DiPietro ss 4-3-3, Alana Delisle p 3-1-0, Emily O’Donnell p 1-0-0, Olivia Delong 1b 4-1-2, Emma Catania dp 2-0-0, Lauren Hale rf 0-0-0, Karleigh Walker ph 1-0-0, Ella Bezanson cf 4-2-2, Olivia Levasseur 3b 4-1-3, Julia Campbell c 4-0-1, Madelyn DiPietro cf 0-0-0, Meghan McElaney lf 4-0-0, Abby Aponas 2b 3-0-1. Totals 25-8-12
Masconomet (7): Eliza Reimold ss 3-1-1, Sophia Ciccarelli cf 3-1-0, Rebecca Toomey 2b 4-1-1, Brianna Melillo 1b 4-1-3, Alex Locke p 4-1-4-2, Olivia Fillmore rf 4-0-0, Brooke Donahue lf 2-0-0, Nicole Flak rf 1-1-0, Cate Susser 3b 2-0-0, Ashley Hamson lf 2-0-1, Dannielle Tremblay dp 2-0-0, Sarah Jane O’Connor c 0-0-0, Ashey Powers 1-1-0. Totals 32-7-10
RBI: Amesbury — Levasseur 2, Delisle Catania, Delong; Masco — Hamson 3, Locke 2, Melillo, Donahue
WP: Delisle 2-0 (4 1/3 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 5 K); Sv: Delisle 1; Also: O’Donnell (2 2/3, 5, 6, 6, 3, 3); LP: Locke
Amesbury (3-0): 4 0 2 1 0 1 0 — 8
Masconomet (2-1): 0 0 0 1 0 0 6 — 7