Pinkerton hands Bishop Guertin baseball its first loss

Chris Pantazis photo BG pitcher Brett Anderson delivers to the plate during his team’s Wednesday road game at Pinkerton in Derry.

DERRY – Missed scoring opportunities early in its Wednesday afternoon game at Pinkerton Academy wound up costing the previously-undefeated Bishop Guertin baseball squad dearly in a 6-1 loss to the host Astros.

Coach Scott Painter saw his BG bunch put runners in scoring position in both the first and second innings but come up empty in both frames. And with star lefty pitchers Brett Anderson of Guertin and Asa Runge of Pinkerton dueling impressively and in earnest, it was likely that runs would be at a premium.

Both junior hurlers pitched extremely well, but Astro Runge ended up collecting the victory after his offense managed to score twice in the fourth inning, once more in the fifth, and three times in the sixth in handing the Division I-leading Cardinals their first loss of the 2019 campaign.

The 11-0 Cardinals strode into the Wednesday road game aiming to remain perfect, but the locals had a knock-down-drag-out, 18-14 battle with Keene in their rear-view mirror from Monday.

Pinkerton, meanwhile, was also pretty warm having won five of its last six decisions to advance to 7-3. Coach Steve Campo’s crew was fresh off of a 7-2 crushing of Concord in the state capital on Tuesday.

“I think we let them off the hook early, but that’s what can happen against a kid (Runge) who is a D-I pitcher,” Painter said. “This really wasn’t a 6-1 game. They got the momentum and put it away late, but Brett pitched well and we didn’t make some plays we have to make.”

The Cards got a one-out triple from Anderson in the top half of the first inning but left him stranded on third base when Runge tallied the first two of his nine strikeouts on the day.

Anderson then got Pinkerton out in order in the latter half of the first, and Guertin got its first two men on base to start the top of the second. But neither Alex George (hit by a pitch) nor Billy Gonya (singled) reached home plate as Runge whiffed the next three Cardinals in a row.

Pinkerton plated the first two runs of the day in the latter half of the fourth – which all-stater Connor Jenkins led off with a titanic, inside-the-park homer to center field – by whacking three total hits.

Facing a 3-0 deficit in the top of the sixth with time being of the essence, BG scored once on two hits thanks to George’s RBI single in attempting a comeback. But the locals left two men on base in that frame and a total of seven for the day.

PA padded its lead up to 6-1 with three more runs on one hit and the game’s lone error in the bottom of the sixth.

Winning hurler Runge went six innings striking out the aforementioned nine, walking just one, hitting one batter, and surrendering five hits. Anderson lasted five frames and struck out 10, walked three, and allowed five hits and three earned runs.