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Pepperell Mets 18

Townsend Cubs 6

PEPPERELL — Put the Pepperell Mets’ 18-6 win over the Townsend Cubs on Saturday morning into the ‘team effort’ category.

The Mets fired on all cylinders, taking an early lead and never looking back, as they rolled to a victory that improved them to 6-2 for the season.

The Mets pounded 16 hits in the game, getting offensive contributions up and down the lineup. They committed just one error in the contest, playing team defense that backed solid pitching by Justin Roberts, Joey Dolciotto, Joe McCaffrey and Matt Foley. Add to that an aggressive approach on the basepaths and the Mets played well in all departments in rolling to an impressive win.

Roberts started the game on the mound and struck out the first two hitters he faced, before Will Foster singled. But Mets catcher Derek Maskalenko’s strong throw to second base snuffed out a stolen base attempt, and the Mets came out swinging in the bottom of the inning.

Myles Wharram led off with a double before stealing second and third for the first run of the game. After Cubs starting pitcher Casey MacFarlane got a popout for the first out, Neil Maskalenko reached on an error. Foley (RBI double), Matt Kirk (RBI double) Dolciotto (single), and Roberts (RBI single) then came through with consecutive hits to build the lead to 5-0.

The Mets immediately regained control of the game with another five-spot in the second, aided by loose Cubs defense. Wharram had a pair of hits in the inning, a double and an RBI single, while Foley (single) and McCaffrey (RBI single) also chipped in with key hits as the Mets moved in front 10-4.

Brian Quin came on in relief for the Cubs in the bottom of the third, after Dolciotto pitched out of a jam to toss a goose egg in the top of the inning. The Mets scored four runs on just a single hit (Dolciotto’s single) to extend the lead to 14-4.

The Cubs sliced two runs off the lead in the top of the fourth with a display of power. Skylar Whiteny tripled to lead off and scored when Steve Valacer ripped a home run over the left center field fence, which made it 14-6.

The Mets offense was relentless and they added four more runs in the bottom of the inning. Neil Maskalenko led off by reaching on an error before Foley singled. Kirk plated both runners with a ringing double. After Dolciotto singled, McCaffrey’s run-producing single, and Julie Pecukonis’ RBI groundout extended the advantage to 18-6.

The Mets sealed the deal as McCaffrey (one strikeout) and Matt Foley (two strikeouts) tossed goose eggs in the fifth and sixth innings. Both pitchers came in and fired strikes, showing a smart approach with a big lead.

Quin finished off his three inning stint on the mound for the Cubs with a scoreless fifth, getting a great play from Valacer at shortstop, who knocked down Dolciotto’s bullet and tagged second base to complete a force play after Foley and Kirk had come up with two-out singles.

Foley led the Mets’ offense with three singles, a double, an RBI and four runs scored. Kirk added a single, two doubles, three runs scored and three runs-batted in, Wharram a single, two doubles, an RBI and two runs scored, Dolciotto three singles and three runs scored, and McCaffrey two singles and two RBI. Neil Maskalenko reached base in three of his five plate appearances and crossed the plate three times while Roberts singled, scored a pair of runs and added two runs-batted-in.

For the Cubs, Croteau ranged from his center field position to make a nice running catch in right center, while MacFarlane played well at third base.