South County Navy sails past Lee 7-2 in Babe Ruth 16-18 baseball

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PITTSFIELD — The bats were active and John Fielding allowed just two runs in six-plus innings of work on the mound as South County Navy improved to .500 in the Pittsfield Babe Ruth 16-18 League on Friday night with a 7-2 win.

Visiting Lee (1-4) came out looking to get on the board early as Evan Heath started the game with a walk, before Cole Redstone scored him on a sacrifice fly for a 1-0 lead.

"The first batter was pretty rough with a four-pitch walk, but I settled in and drew some contact," Fielding said. "I wasn't too focused on striking people out, I knew I had a good defense behind me that can make plays."

Fielding quickly settled in and toss five-straight innings of scoreless ball. In order to keep the scoreboard clean, Fielding had to work out of a handful of jams, including a threat that featured the bases loaded with just one out in the third. Fielding closed the inning with a strikeout and a fly out to escape the threat.

"It is tougher [pitching in a jam] because you are thinking about the runners," Fielding said. "You have to just do you job and focus on one batter at a time and trust your defense to make the play."

Fielding's night consisted of six strikeouts, just two walks and two earned runs in six-plus innings of work.

Navy (2-2) tied the game in the bottom of the first as Luke Patella reached on an error before Jack Carpenter ripped a double down the line to plate the run. Patella, and number-two hitter Cooper Shepardson gave Navy plenty of chances score, reaching base five times in a combined eight at bats.

"It is always important to get on base," Shepardson said. "But when you have three [Fielding] and four [Carpenter] coming after you, they can bring you in, but you just have to get on."

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Fielding plated Shepardson in the bottom of the third inning to give Navy a 2-1 lead. On the mound for Lee was Heath, who pitched four-plus innings and allowed four runs while striking out three batters.

Evan Trombley started the top of the fourth inning with a single and quickly stole second base to give Lee an opportunity to knot things up at two, however, Fielding would again find a way out of the inning. After a liner to second base and a strikeout, Mike Naventi stepped in and hit a chopper that was going to cause trouble. Fielding was there, though, and caught the ball over his shoulder, before spinning and firing to first to retire the side.

"Sometimes on the mound it is tough to focus on fielding the ball," Fielding said. "It just came natural with the ball going over my shoulder and it seemed like the best way to get the out."

Patella started the bottom of the fifth inning with a walk, stole second base and Shepardson was there with a single to push the lead to 3-1. Shepardson would later score on an error, moving the lead to 4-1.

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Heath, who reached base in three-of-four at bats, singled to start the sixth and would score on a single from Trombley, but that was all the Lee bats could manage against Fielding.

A two-run single by Patella in the sixth helped Navy increase the lead to 7-2.

After facing two batters in the seventh, Fielding was replaced by Carpenter, who closed the game and snapped Navy's two-game slide.

"We started the season knowing each other because of Legion [baseball] last season and a few new kids, so we already had a bunch of chemistry," Shepardson said. "I think the first few games we didn't play well because we came into it after not playing any high school ball, where we are usually coming in after 20 games under their belt.

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"I think we are just starting to get into the swing of things."

Navy is back at it this morning against Aces at Taconic High School with first pitch slated for 10 a.m. and Lee will look to get back on track on Wednesday against Aces.

———

Lee     100     001     0     —     2     8     2

South County     101     023     x     —     7     9     0

W: Fielding; L: Heath.

2B — L 1 (Langley); SC 1 (Carpenter).

Jake Mendel can be reached at jmendel@berkshireeagle.com, at @JMendel94 on Twitter and 413-496-6252.

South County     101     023     x     —     7     9     0

W: Fielding; L: Heath.

2B — L 1 (Langley); SC 1 (Carpenter).

Jake Mendel can be reached at jmendel@berkshireeagle.com, at @JMendel94 on Twitter and 413-496-6252.

W: Fielding; L: Heath.

2B — L 1 (Langley); SC 1 (Carpenter).

Jake Mendel can be reached at jmendel@berkshireeagle.com, at @JMendel94 on Twitter and 413-496-6252.


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