On Friday afternoon, the baseball team motored north to Massachusetts for a match-up with Deerfield Academy, the #1 ranked team in Central New England.
Things began inauspiciously for The Brook as they were barely off the bus before finding themselves mired in a 0-6 1st inning deficit. A Nico Marino single in the 2nd plated Isaiah Gibbs, who doubled, but Deerfield hung three more runs in the bottom of the 3rd to build a 9-1 advantage. Incredibly, they would find themselves trailing entering the bottom of the 4th.
The Brook exploded for nine runs in the top of the 4th behind six singles, a double, two walks, and two hit-by-pitch to kick the lid off their coffin. Seth Laureno started the inning by taking a pith off the arm. Gibbs followed with a single before a Juju Martinez single scored Laureano to inch within 2-9. Marino sacrificed the runners over with a bunt before an Alex Baaden walk loaded the bases with one out. Aiden Ruiz then singled on a line drive to right that scored Gibbs and brought in the two other runners on an error. 5-9. Jordan Serrano walked, then Jayden Stroman singled to pull the Bears within 6-9. Logan Charboneau then sent a ball to the warning track and Serrano engineered the rare and impressive feat of tagging up two bases and scoring from second. 7-9. Laureano came up again and singled this time, scoring Stroman. 8-9. Gibbs then followed with a game-tying double. 9-9. Two batters later, the Bears had the lead for good when Marino singled home Gibbs for a 10-9 advantage.
Stroman took the mound in the 4th and worked a key shutdown inning by retiring the side in order with a pop up and a pair of strikeouts. The Bears also went down 1-2-3 in the top of the 5th, but Stroman worked a clean bottom half as the game moved to the 6th.
The Bears extended their lead in the top half with four runs. A single from Stroman and walks to Charboneau and Laureano loaded the bases with nobody out and Mateo Lopez took advantage with a single. 11-9. A sacrifice fly by Martinez followed to push the lead to 12-9 and a walk to Baaden forced home Laureano. 13-9. A double play off the bat of Aiden Ruiz ended the inning, but not before Lopez was able to score for a 14-9 advantage.
With daylight waning, it was clear that the bottom of the 6th would be the last time at bat for the Green & White. Just three outs from defeat, the hosts rallied to load the bases with nobody out. All three runners would eventually come around to score, but Lopez and Baaden worked around a pair of hits to limit the damage. With the potential winning run at the plate and the tying run on first, Baaden slammed the door on a wild afternoon of baseball with a full-count strikeout. Bears win, 14-12.