The Salem News
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North Reading arrived at Masconomet Saturday afternoon owning 16 straight victories, including a 10-inning win over the Chieftains earlier this spring.
The Hornets departed with their streak snapped as the Chieftains gained a small measure of revenge after a 2-1 win.
Masco, which dropped a 6-5 game to North Reading in April, has now won seven straight games and sits at 13-5 with two regular season games remaining.
“We go out and just try to play whoever is in the opposite dugout, no matter what their record is or what we did against them in the past,” Masco coach T.J. Baril said. “It was good to get this win and improve our tournament seeding.”
The Chieftains scored single runs in the third and fourth innings and senior righty Speros Varinos fired a complete-game one-hitter for the win.
Joe Klingensmith and Elias Varinos each had RBI singles and finished with two hits apiece. Will Twiss also had a pair of hits for Masco.
Speros Varinos ran into trouble in the sixth inning, surrendering a pair of walks that sandwiched a single to load the bases. He then walked in North Reading’s only run.
“We took a trip and he assured us that he was absolutely OK and everything was under control,” Baril said. “The next batter grounded out back to him.”
Speros Varinos then worked a 1-2-3 seventh inning to slam the door.
Catcher Mike Manni played an excellent game behind the plate and threw out a runner attempting to steal in the fourth inning.
HOSMAN HELPS PHILLIPS ANDOVER TO TITLE: Matt Hosman of Peabody had two hits, scored three runs and knocked in a pair as Phillips Andover won their second straight Central New England Prep School Baseball League (CNEPSBL) title. The Big Blue defeated both top-seeded Deerfield, 10-7, and second ranked Worcester Academy, 12-8, to win the title.
Pingree falls in EIL Final: Pingree defeated Berwick 8-3 in the EIL semifinals, but lost to the Winsor School, 2-0, in the final. Jill Witwicki had a hit and two RBI and Gabbie Muniz added two hits and two RBI in the win over Berwick. Christina Chalmers struck out eight and walked one to earn the win on the hill.
Muniz, Haley Sabino and Kelsey Dion hit safely in the finals and Chalmers pitched well in defeat. Pingree finished 12-5.
Peabody 9, North Reading 8: Mark Helwig picked the perfect time to score his first varsity goal. Helwig, a defensive midfielder, picked off a North Reading pass and broke for the cage, scoring what proved to be the game-winning goal late in the third quarter. The Tanners (10-9) qualified for the postseason for the first time since 2009.
Keifer Heckman scored four goals and added three assists and Nick Ouellette also had a pair of goals for Peabody. Josh Fiore and Jeremiah Manfra each had one goal. Spencer Dean and Andrew Najjar played well defensively and Mike Vadala stood out at the faceoff X.
Beverly 15, Acton-Boxborugh 11: Brendan Flaherty scored five times and assisted on two others as the Panthers (15-3) went on the road and scored six unanswered goals in the fourth quarter to upset fourth ranked A-B. Ryan Shipp added a hat trick and an assist while Matt Page (2 assists), Dom Abate (assist) and Nick Albano (assist) each contributed two goals. Brian Williams added a goal and an assist in the victory to support goalie Kevin Lally’s 14-save performance.
Duxbury 7, St. John’s Prep 1: Andrew Gallahue scored a third-quarter goal for the Eagles, but the Prep (12-5) just couldn’t solve Duxbury’s defense.
Salem 15, Malden 4: Alexa Gilbert had a huge game with six goals and four assists to power the Witches (11-4) to victory. Kristina Leblanc finished with two goals and three assists while Emily Coelho and Courtney Maurice both had two goals and two helpers. Lydia Grasberger (1 goal, 3 assists), Lia Buonfiglio (1 goal, 1 assist) and Xhulia Kanani (1 goal) were also offensive forces for Salem.