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Friday, July 18, 2014

Nashua Silver Knights fall to Wachusett Dirt Dawgs

NASHUA – The Nashua Silver Knights simply can’t stand prosperity.

Trying to get to two games over .500 for the first time since they started the season 2-0, they faltered badly with a 9-4 loss at the hands of the last place (14-22) Wachusett Dirt Dawgs before a Thursday night Holman Stadium crowd of 1,934. ...

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NASHUA – The Nashua Silver Knights simply can’t stand prosperity.

Trying to get to two games over .500 for the first time since they started the season 2-0, they faltered badly with a 9-4 loss at the hands of the last place (14-22) Wachusett Dirt Dawgs before a Thursday night Holman Stadium crowd of 1,934.

The problem? Pitching. Five Silver Knights hurlers combined two give up 11 hits, walking six Dirt Dawgs and hitting two. Trailing 9-2 in the ninth, Nashua (seven hits) got a two-run Mike Pierson double, but too little, too late.

“I don’t have an answer,” Silver Knights manager Ted Currle said. “We got out-hit and outplayed by a team that was ready to play. And it looked like early on we were not ready to play. We didn’t pitch great tonight, but we also didn’t do anything at the plate.”

With the score 2-2, Wachusett took control with three runs in the fifth thanks to wildness by reliever Tim Viehoff. Viehoff, who earlier had given up a solo homer to Joe Breen, walked Breen with the bases loaded on a 3-2 pitch to force in the go-ahead run. A walk and hit batsmen had helped to load them up.

Viehoff then gave up a two-run single to Wachusett’s Ryder Miconi and Nashua found itself down 5-2. It was Miconi’s third RBI of the night as he singled in a run off Knights’ starter Carmen Giampetruzzi in the second.

Wachusett added two more in the sixth for a 7-2 lead on Mattingly Romanin’s RBI single and a Matt Tulley wild pitch. They made it 9-2 in the seventh on Romanin’s two-run double.

Nashua got its two runs off Wachusett starter and winner Mike Lundin thanks to two hit batsmen, a Guy Davidson RBI single and Cam DiSarcina sac fly.

Capitalizing on chance

Currle inserted Davidson into the starting lineup at second on Wednesday and Davidson, who struggled with is throws from shortstop, responded with his best offensive and defensive game of the season on Wednesday.

“He played well,” Currle said. “We stuck him at second trying to block the issue of throwing across the diamond. We stuck him at second and he had never played there, ever.”

And now, after the injury departure of Oklahoma’s Quin Whalberg, it may be a fairly steady middle infield combo of Mike Pierson at short and Davidson at second.

On the hill

Jake Mellin gets the start on Friday against Old Orchard, his second home start of the year. Last week he tossed six scoreless before being touched up in the seventh. Mellin, at 0-4, 5.86, is still seeking his first win of the year and has always pitched his best at Holman. Why?

“It’s a higher mound,” Silver Knights pitching coach Kyle Jackson said.

“For the taller kids (Mellin is 6-3) it’s great because you have so much downward (motion).”

Warren sidelined

It’s been official now for a few days: Bedford’s Cole Warren, who was penciled in as the Opening Night starter, has been shelved for the season with shoulder trouble, per request of the Southern New Hampshire University coaching staff.

“He’s a good kid, I was looking forward to having him,” Currle said. “He’s got to be healthy for school, and that’s the most important.”

Daniel Webster College standout third baseman Kyle Brigham plays for the Dirt Dawgs, but didn’t start on Thursday.

The team is expecting a big crowd on Friday night, with fireworks, and over 1,000 tickets sold to the Red Cross and already strong pre-sale.

There will be fireworks, Jumpin’ Jack Flash (Frisbee dog), and the first 500 fans through the gates receive a bobblehead in the alleged likeness of a certain Telegraph sports scribe.