SHEFFIELD, Mass. -- The Mount Everett baseball team got solid pitching from a trio of youngsters to go along with 13 hits in a 14-2 opening day win over Lee on Monday afternoon.
Alek Zdziarski, Jack Carpenter and Kolby Bleau combined to allow just two hits and strike out 10 as the Eagles got a busy first week of the season going in the right direction.
“We threw three guys who are all freshmen, and I thought they all did a good job,” Mount Everett coach Jesse Carpenter said. “We ran into a little bit of a rough patch in the first inning, and sometimes that happens the first game, where you’re a little out of sorts. We had a couple of chances to make some plays, and we didn’t, and that makes it tough.
“We bounced back nicely. The pitchers did a good job of throwing strikes. We limited the number of baserunners. We limited the number of walks, which is what you want. And for three young guys to go out and do that, we couldn’t be happier.”
Carpenter said he decided to split the innings among the three rookies to keep Mount Everett’s pitching staff fresh for games Wednesday against McCann Tech and Friday against Monument Mountain.
Against Lee (0-1), the Eagles found themselves in an early 2-0 hole before they came up to bat. But Mount Everett answered with three runs in the bottom of the first and never looked back.
Brendan Dempsey started the go-ahead rally with a leadoff double to right, and Niko Casivant and Cavan Brady followed with a walk and an infield single to load the bases with nobody out.
Nick VandeBogart lifted a sacrifice fly to left for the first of his five RBIs, and Patrick Silk doubled to left to plate the tying and go-ahead runs.
Those first inning markers were the only earned runs allowed by Lee’s DeClan Drozd, Garrett Hopkins and Andrew Reuf.
Lee coach Tim Shepardson indicated he expects some growing pains for a Wildcat squad that includes just two juniors and one senior.
“Every game, we’re just going to be working on getting better, better and better,” Shepardson said.
“These were our first ground balls [today], and it is what it is. Hard conditions. The field is not in its best shape. You don’t exactly get true hops and things of that nature. But pitching-wise, we were excited to see what we did today.”
The Lee defense committed six errors behind its three pitchers, including two in a five-run fourth inning that made it a 13-2 game.
Before that, Mount Everett scored four in the third to give itself a six-run cushion. Gulotta led off with a double to get that rally started; the big blow was a two-run single by VandeBogart.
Brady had a two-run single and came around to score on VandeBogart’s RBI single in the fourth.
VandeBogart reached on a one-out error to open the sixth and eventually scored on a single to right by Anthony Lupiani.
“I think the key for us is we try to grind out at-bats,” Jesse Carpenter said. “The guys at the bottom of the lineup did a good job of finding ways on. We worked some walks and things like that.
“And we got the bases loaded so many times, you figure someone is eventually going to get the big hit. And Nick got a couple of them. … But, overall, I think we did a good job putting the bat on the ball today.”
On the hill, Zdziarski got the start and went three innings. Carpenter and Bleau each pitched a pair of scoreless frames.
Andrew Reuf and Cole Redstone each had a hit for Lee.
The Wildcats will look for their first win on Wednesday against Duggan before traveling to Sabis on Friday.
Mount Everett hosts McCann Tech on Wednesday and Monument two days later.