By Rob Potter
MONTICELLO New Hope built an early 11-run lead and then held off a comeback attempt by Harry O’s Cleaning to earn a 19-11 victory on Tuesday night in a Village of Monticello Men’s Softball League game at Kenneth H. Somerville Field.
After grabbing a 2-0 advantage in the bottom of the first inning, New Hope increased its lead to 9-0 in the bottom of the second. The key hits in the frame were a two-run single by Darrin Raynor and RBI singles by Lou Velasco and D.J. Pugh.
New Hope scored its other three runs in the inning on a passed ball and two errors.
Harry O’s got on the scoreboard in the top of the third. With one out, Julio Mangual reached base with an infield single. He crossed home plate when the next batter, William Mott, tripled to right center field. Mott scored when Josh Greene grounded out, which cut the New Hope lead to 9-2.
In the bottom of the third, New Hope extended its advantage to 13-2. Garrett Owen led off the frame with a double and scored when Velasco doubled.
After two outs were recorded, Velasco scored as Pugh reached base on an error.
The next batter, Mike Kushetsky, blasted a two-run, inside-the-park home run to deep center field.
Harry O’s answered with four runs in the top of the fourth. Stephon McGinnis, Bruce Batewell, Eric Vargas and Dennis Colin all scored on errors to bring the team to within seven runs at 13-6.
After holding New Hope scoreless in the bottom of the fourth, Harry O’s scored twice in the top of the fifth. Greene and Brian Johnson both hit RBI singles to make it a 13-8 game.
In the bottom of the fifth, New Hope loaded the bases with one out. But the Harry O’s pitcher, Greene, got out of the frame by retiring the next two batters on a fielder’s choice and a fly ball, respectively.
Harry O’s closed to within two runs at 13-11 by scoring three runs in the top of the sixth. Vargas walked to begin the inning and stole second base. After New Hope pitcher Mike Greco recorded a strikeout, Mangual tripled to left field to allow Vargas to score. Mangual also scored when the throw to third base was offline, making it a 13-10 game.
Mott then walked and later crossed the plate when Johnson hit into a fielder’s choice.
New Hope replied with six runs in the bottom of the sixth.
Matt Stoddard belted a two-run, inside-the-park home run to left field to give New Hope a 15-11 advantage. Chris Lake had an RBI triple later in the frame, which pushed New Hope’s lead to 18-11.
With the win, New Hope improved its record to 8-2. Harry O’s is now 4-7 on the season.