BROCKTON, Massachusetts (July 6, 2023) – The Westfield Starfires came out swinging and launched four home runs as part of a 14-hit barrage in a 10-5 win over the Brockton Rox in Futures Collegiate Baseball League action on Thursday, July 6.
Westfield is now 16-19 on the season.
Corey Zientek started the offense with a flourish, sending the first pitch he faced over the left field fence for his second home run of the season. Nick Serce followed with a walk, and Jay Bant singled to put two on. That brought J.D. Jones to the dish, and he crushed a 1-0 offering to center for a two-run double, giving the Starfires a 3-0 lead before the Rox could come to bat.
In the second, Westfield added another with one crack of the bat. Ben Robichaux turned on a 2-2 delivery and sailed it down the left field line for his first home run of the season.
The Rox scored twice in the third, taking advantage of a pair of errors that ultimately resulted in both runs.
However, the Starfires counterpunched in the top of the fourth, as Robichaux led off with a walk and Kiernan Caffrey doubled to give Westfield second and third. Zientek hit a deep fly to left that allowed Robichaux to score, and Serce followed with an RBI double of his own, plating Caffrey. Two batters later, Bant connected for his third single of the game, scoring Serce for a 7-2 Westfield edge.
Down but not out, Brockton scored two more in the fifth, with two singles that led to a double steal attempt; Ryan Gerety scored, although Daniel MacDougall was put out at second. That proved fortuitous for Westfield, as a solo home run by Luke Bauer one batter later made it 7-4.
Westfield bounced right back again. Zientek hit a ball to third and came down the line with speed, forcing a bad throw that allowed him to take second. Two batters later, Luke Yuhasz came through on a 1-1 pitch, skying the ball just over the wall in right center, joining his University of Louisiana-Lafayette teammate Robichaux in the longball parade and returning the Starfire lead to five runs at 9-4.
Brockton added one more in the seventh, again taking advantage of defensive miscues to plate an unearned run. However, in the ninth, Serce struck the final blow, a towering home run to right-center on the first pitch of the inning for the 10-5 final tally. It was his league-best eighth of the season.
Trey Yesu earned the win with five strong innings, allowing four runs – only two earned – on eight hits with four strikeouts. Shayne Audet followed with three innings, allowing one unearned on two hits and two strikeouts, and Ryan Robb closed the door, working around a lone hit for a scoreless ninth.
The Starfires will next head to Norwich, Connecticut to face off with the Sea Unicorns on Friday, July 7. First pitch at Dodd Stadium is slated for 6:30 p.m.