Zeuli started for Peabody and worked the first 41/3 innings before reaching the 85 pitch limit. He was relieved by Nick Iannuzzi. Zeuli was charged with four runs on six hits, walked one, and struck out eight. Bennett O’Leary had worked a walk to start the fifth and Jack Julian singled before Zeuli had to leave.
One run scored on a throwing error after a pick off attempt and the second run came home on a throwing error to close the gap to 5-4. Manchester-Essex had scored a pair of runs in the second on singles by Ryan O’Connell, John Creehan, and O’Leary. Julian’s grounder was thrown away trying to complete a double play, allowing two runs to score.
That was as close as Manchester-Essex would come. Peabody added an insurance run in the top of the sixth when pinch hitter Ryan Lemole belted a two-out homer over the left field fence off reliever Jake Levendusky.
“I try to get everybody in the game in some way,” said Sarkisian. “I decided to let Lemole hit, and he made the most of the opportunity with his first Little League home run. I’m happy for him; he’s a great kid and it couldn’t have come at a better time for us.”
Peabody banged out eight hits led by Mullen with two. They also got some big defensive plays from Iannuzzi at shortstop and MacGregor at third base in the fourth inning. Dan Marshall came on in the sixth to finish up after Iannuzzi had thrown 20 pitches. Manchester-Essex also had eight hits led by Creehan with a pair. Luke Leavitt, Harry Painter, and Janowicz all hit safely.
“I’m really proud of my kids,” said Manchester-Essex manager Keith Painter. “We finished 1-2, but we had to play Peabody twice and Danvers. I’m lucky to have a lot of kids on this team that play really hard. They’ve been together since they were 9-years-old. It’s tough for us to go against teams from big communities, but I am very happy with the job the kids did.”