NORTH ADAMS — McCann Tech combined a solid offensive attack with superb pitching performances by Ozzie Weber and Collin Booth to defeat Drury 8-1 under the lights Thursday at Joe Wolfe Field.
Weber pitched five innings allowing one run and striking out nine, while Booth finished up with two scoreless innings.
Leading 2-1 after four innings, McCann rallied for four runs in the top of the fifth, highlighted by cleanup hitter Owen Gagne’s one-out two-run base hit.
Landon Champney started the rally with a solid single to left. Booth followed with an opposite-field line drive base hit to right, moving Champney up a base. Weber singled to right with Champney getting gunned down at the plate from second and Booth moving up to third. Weber stole second moving into scoring position before Gagne smoked a base hit to left, scoring Booth and Weber.
Gagne stole second and Austin Buda was hit by a pitch. Josh Livsey grounded into a force out at third. Seth Farnsworth blooped a single to right scoring Buda with Livsey going over to third. Livsey scored on a wild pitch pushing the lead to 6-1.
With Weber cruising, but with an elevated pitch count, Booth was called on to finish up after building a comfortable five-run lead.
“Ozzie was out there and he had reached his limit (94 pitches), so Booth came in and pitched well,” McCann coach Justin Howland said. “It was redemption for Ozzie, last time he faced them he hit four batters and he was the talk of the town that night. Tonight he stayed poised and we got the bats going. We had talked last night after a tough loss at Lenox and we talked about not trying to hit doubles and triples and just to put good swings on the ball, so we did that tonight; not try to do too much.”
Weber said he felt poised during the second time around against the Blue Devils.
“I felt good, I mixed up my pitches. I thought it was a good team win,” Weber (who chipped in with an RBI single in the third) said. “We had some good at-bats and, you know, hitting is contagious.”
“I have no problem giving up hits, they barreled up more balls than we did and we’re on to Monday (against Lenox),” Drury coach Robert Jutras said. “I don’t think we were aggressive enough tonight and we didn’t really trust our approach and what we were looking to do. We’re playing for our lives now so it’s do or die.”
The rivals exchanged single runs in the second inning. McCann struck first. Gagne reached on a hot shot to third that went for an infield hit. He moved up to second on an errant pickoff attempt and scored on a base hit up the middle by Buda.
Drury answered in the bottom of the inning as Noah Miller worked a four-pitch walk, moved up to second on a sacrifice bunt by Zach Davignon. Pinch runner Amont David, running for Miller, scored on a single to right by Nick Sacco.
McCann scored a single run in the third. Jacob Howland singled up the middle with one out. Booth followed with a base hit to center. Weber then helped his own cause lacing a single to left scoring Howland for the game’s go-ahead run.
McCann, facing Lee Monday, ran its record to 9-6 while Drury, taking on Lenox, also on Monday, fell to 7-9.