WILLIAMSTOWN -- For the record, there is no one on the Mount Greylock roster who is particularly comfortable with the way the team has been winning of late.
After four consecutive double-digit victories to open the season, the Mounties have needed extra innings to beat Lee, 6-5, and Pittsfield, 8-3. In both games, as well as their latest win, 5-2 over St. Joseph, the Mounties have trailed at some point. Against the Wildcats, they were down 5-0.
"I don't know what it is," said Greylock pitcher Ian Brink. "We have to start out with a little more intensity, I guess. Lately, we've been so sluggish."
"We never give up," said pitcher Robby Buffis. "We keep fighting, and that's one of the reasons [the team has been successful]."
But Buffis agreed that it would be nice once in a while to jump out to a big lead early and slowly pull away.
"We need to start better," he said.
As Mountie coach Steve Messina notes, it's not exactly time to break out in a cold sweat just yet.
Greylock, after all, is still 8-1, and still in first place in the Southern Division of the Berkshire County League.
"We're doing all right," Messina said. "This team has a lot of heart. We've been in a lot of close games and we've managed to win most of them. The other thing you need to know is that there are a lot of really good teams in the county. There aren't too many easy wins in the Berkshires.
"One thing in our favor is that we have really good pitching, and we try to play good defense every time out," he continued. "Overall, we make the basic plays, and once in a while, we make a great play. That's helped us."
Messina has a point. In the first inning of a recent game against St. Joseph, the Crusaders loaded the bases with no outs. But the Greylock infield made good defensive plays to prevent any scoring.
The Mounties did not make any spectacular plays that inning; just the correct plays.
Later, when Brink was pitching, several Crusaders hit shots to the outfield. But the balls were run down every time by Mountie outfielders. Greylock won the game.
"Obviously, we can't keep digging ourselves into a hole every game," said Messina. "It's going to burn us sooner or later. But the name of the game is pitching and defense, and we've gotten both so far."
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