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The undefeated Nashoba Valley Veterinarian Mustangs (5-0) moved into first place, exchanging places with Drew Farms (5-1), a team that appears to be a strong contender for the coveted top two spots in the standings, while Floral Arts (4-1) sits in third place. Through four games, the Mustangs had only allowed five runs, but in its fifth game against the slugging Shortcut Landscaping (3-3), the reigning champs gave up 14 runs. The 19 runs that teams have scored against the Mustangs this season equals only half the amount that the next stingiest team (Floral Arts) has allowed. Pro Sports Therapy, a team battling injuries, won its first game of the season, and now all nine teams in the league have earned at least one victory.
Willis Tent came roaring back from a recent loss with a mercy-rule win over Gutcheck on Sunday. Glenn Harding was unstoppable all evening, going 3-for-3 with a sixth-inning leadoff game-ending home run. Dennis Kane answered the call going 3-for-3 too. Rob Swinamer, Brian Gallardo and John Hunter kept the offensive machine running, each contributing with a home run. Willis pitcher Rob Swinamer was stellar on the mound. Dave Guthrie and Kevin Borselli laced them up for the first time this season and each contributed a hit for Gutcheck. Jim DeMarco was 2-for-2.
Floral Arts 8 – Burtons Grill 7
Mark Chambers homered in his third-consecutive game and added another hit in a close win for Floral Art over Burtons. Simon Tripp hit two homers for the winners. Burtons staged a late 4-run rally in the seventh inning that fell short with the tying run on third. Burtons’ Tim Scott went 3-for-3, Dave Batchelder went deep for his first home run of the season, and Rick Waldron and Jeff Kott helped close the gap with key hits in the seventh. Jerod Colley aided a fine effort on the mound with a pair of RBI.
Nashoba Valley Veterinarian Mustangs 21 – Pro Sports Therapy 0
Nashoba Valley Veterinary Mustangs hurler Paul Liguouri pitched a three hitter for the Mustangs third consecutive shutout victory. Ligouri added two hits and an RBI to help his cause. Don Cusano led the Mustang offense with two home runs and 8 RBI. Mark Cusano chipped in with three hits, including a homer and 4 RBIs. Other Mustangs with three hits included Paul Selfrige, Jim Ward, and Jack Erickson. Bill Knute, Dan Crogan (3 RBI), and Jay Dolan all contributed two hits for the winners. Solid all around defense by the Mustangs helped keep their shutout streak alive.
Pro Sports Therapy 14 – Healy Oil 11
On Tuesday, Pro Sports Therapy and Healy Oil engaged in another of their classic battles, with PST earning their first win of the season, 14-11. PST jumped out to a 9-2 lead, riding their most consistent offensive showing of the young season, only to see the Oilers put up a six-spot in the top of the fourth. From that point on, the game remained a back-and-forth battle. PST received offensive contributions up and down the lineup. Dave Chirokas led the team with a defensive effort reminiscent of the championship years as well as a 4-for-4 night at the plate. PST also got a 3 hit/3 RBI nights from Mark Urlage. Gary Royal, Rich Morin, Jeff Fuller, and John Bodi also chipped in 3 hits and Ben Armstrong drove in another 3.
Gutcheck 16 – Burtons Grill 4
GutCheck scattered 27 hits en route to a convincing victory over Burtons. Matt Sepe led the way with three home runs, two of which were 3-run shots. Rey Vienneau had one home run and another hit that struck the top of the fence and fell into the center field gate opening, deemed a ground rule double. Jeff Stabach and Jim DeMarco each had five hits and four runs scored. Tim Piwowar and Rob Rohlfs added three hits apiece, and Gary Lavelle pitched a strong game to keep the Burtons bats at bay.
Nashoba Valley Veterinarian Mustangs 27 – Shortcut Landscaping 14
The Mustangs withstood five Shortcut home run blasts by scoring in every inning to outscore their powerful opponents, 27-14, on Wednesday. Every Mustang had at least one hit and one run scored in the high scoring affair. Bill Knute (3-4, HR, 6 RBI) struck the big blow for the Mustangs with a grand slam after teammate Don Cusano (3-4, HR, 5 RBI) was intentionally walked with the bases loaded. Jim Ward also had a bases-clearing 3-run triple to go along with his 3 hits and 4 RBI. Paul Selfrige (4 runs scored, 2 RBI) and Jay Lincoln contributed four hits apiece for the Mustangs. Jack Erickson added 3 hits, 3 runs scored and 2 RBI. The Mustangs infield defense (Selfrige, Dan Crogan, Cormac Bordes) turned two big double plays to snuff out Shortcut rallies.
Drew Farms 21 – Willis Tent 19
With 27 years in the Westford slow pitch league, Drew Farms utility man Bill Faherty made his pitching debut against Willis Tent. A 7-run top half of the first inning gave Bill Faherty a good start to his debut and nice cushion to work with. Willis had a decent first inning, bringing seven men to plate and getting two runs back. But Willis Tent walked their way back into the game, patiently taking an impressive 11 walks. The third inning produced some more action as Drew Farms put up four and Willis put three more on the board. As the Drew Farm bats went silent, Willis put up three three-run innings to tie it in the bottom of the fifth. Willis took a very comfortable lead to the top of the seventh, but Drews came back, earning two walks and 10 runs. Willis scored two more runs, but stalled in the seventh. John Mangiaratti of Willis Tent hit a 2-run home run.