Starfires Pitch Way To Split At Lake Monsters

Box Score

BURLINGTON, Vermont (June 9, 2024) – The Westfield Starfires pounced early and held on to win a 4-2 decision in a Futures Collegiate Baseball League contest against the Vermont Lake Monsters on Sunday, June 9 at Centennial Field in Burlington, Vermont, splitting the weekend set as a result.

Westfield’s record now stands at 6-3 on the campaign, in first by percentage points over the Norwich Sea Unicorns and Brockton Rox.

“We had to get some runs early to give us a boost and get some confidence,” Manager Paul Bonfiglio said after the game. “To get some hits early let people know we were locked in,” he added.

Boston College’s Colin Larson worked his way back from a 1-2 count to earn a leadoff walk, and advanced to second on a wild pitch during the at-bat of Millersville University’s Sam Morris. Morris singled, and both ended up scoring in the inning, with Larson coming home on a groundout by Central Connecticut State University’s Gianno Merlonghi and Morris tagging up on a sacrifice fly by Jayden Novak of the College of Charleston.

Larson and Morris teamed up to add two more in the third. The rookie smashed a leadoff triple off of the center-field fence and was promptly driven in when Morris doubled to left. On the very next pitch, Morris broke for third and the pickoff throw sailed into the outfield, allowing him to easily scamper home.

That was all the Westfield pitching staff needed. Jack Martineau of Post University was given the ball to start and his off-speed pitches all were working as he twirled five and a third scoreless, scattering three hits and three walks with five strikeouts. Keene State University’s Daniel Cantafi took care of the next five outs.

“Fastball wasn’t really there, so early on I went with the slider, and the changeup worked well,” Martineau said, noting of the early run support, “I loved that. You always say you want that run support early so to go out and have that, loved it.”

“He pitched great today,” Bonfiglio said. “Filled up the zone, and he really pitched today. Not that he hasn’t pitched in the past…but he was all around that zone today, and it was a tough zone, and he pitched through that,” he added.

In the eighth, Westfield State University’s Joe Fischer was able to get two outs, but the Lake Monsters loaded the bases. Bonfiglio made the call to the bullpen to Boston College freshman Cesar Gonzalez, who fanned Vermont’s Jeter Polledo with a high fastball to end the threat. He did allow a two-run home run in the ninth, but finished out the save with a groundout, strikeout, and groundout.

“He’s solid. All of his pitches are good. At times I was thinking to myself, ‘If you’re gonna get beat, get beat with your best pitch,’ but the truth is all of his pitches are really good and I don’t want to handcuff him to one pitch,” Bonfiglio noted of his young pitcher.

The Starfires take on the New Britain Bees on Monday, June 10 with a doubleheader beginning at 10:30 a.m. Westfield’s next home game will be Tuesday, June 11 at 6:30 p.m. against the Brockton Rox. Tickets for all home Starfires games are available at

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