LEOMINSTER -- Townsend Sunday starter Chris Dube carried a no-hitter through five innings to lead the Astros to an 8-2 win over Charlton Sunday morning at Pin Canavino Field in Leominster. The Astros used back-to-back three run innings to hold off the Indians.
Townsend, who was the visiting team, struck first in the opening frame.
The Astros scored two-runs on one hit. Dube led off the inning with a walk and advanced to second on an overthrow, before advancing to third base on a passed ball. Ron Pelletier socked an RBI single to left centerfield to bring across Dube with the first run of the game.
The Astros added another on a wild pitch as Dave Pelletier scampered across the dish to make it 2-0 Townsend.
Dube was in prime form despite battling through back spasms that started last Sunday in the Astros' 2-1 win over Whalom. Dube worked a 1-2-3 inning with consecutive flyouts to Julio Maldonado in left field.
Maldonado reached with a one-out single to right field to leadoff the second, but he would be left stranded on the paths. Charlton ace Mike Tunecki's deceptive curveball started to gain speed and movement as the game moved forward. It was causing an issue for Townsend hitters, as it was dancing into the catcher's mitt. Dan Considine, strikeout, and Pat Meile were retired to end the inning.
Dube and the Astros' defense continued their dominance in the second with another 1-2-3 inning.
Townsend left Leo LeClair stranded after his two-out double to the gap in left-centerfield. Tunecki induced a groundout to second by Dave Pelletier for the third out.
The Astros nine made it three consecutive perfect innings as Dube's control was immaculate. The lanky lefty did not allow a walk the entire game. Dube induced groundouts to short, third base and a pop fly to third to end the inning with a 2-0 lead still intact.
Townsend left two men on base in the fourth following an Eric Johnson double to right field and a walk to Dube. Charlton ended Dube's perfect game bid in the fourth inning on an error at first. Charlton's Dave Furman would later score on a miscommunication by Dube and his third baseman to make it 2-1. The Astros busted the game wide open in the fifth with three runs on four hits.
Considine opened the frame with a single to left field and he later scored on an RBI single up the middle by Dube. Ray O'Brien lofted a sacrife-fly to centerfield, which was deep enough to score Considine from third. Meile, also had an RBI single in the inning.
With the lead at 5-1, the Astros appeared to be in the driver's seat. Charlton kept pecking away with a pair of back-to-back two-out hits in the bottom of the fifth to stymie Dube's no-hit outing.
However, Dube regrouped to get the final batter of the inning to escape unscathed.
The Astros added three more runs in the top of the seventh inning to hold of Charlton and improve to 10-7 on the season. With Sunday's win, the Astros sweep the season series with Charlton, 2-0.
Townsend resumes play this Sunday at Doyle Field in Leominster, when it faces the Leominster Dodgers at 10 a.m.