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Forest Hills pounds out 17 runs against RFK

On the strength of a bases-clearing double by...

By Brian Towey

Robert F. Kennedy coach Dave Cohen had barely settled into his perch atop the dugout at The Ballpark at St. John’s University Friday when what unfolded on the field was liable to plop him into the dirt.

On the strength of a bases-clearing double by Brett Cassidy and a booming two-run triple off the bat of Jonathan Scherer, Forest Hills mounted a 9-1 lead that it wouldn’t relinquish, as eight more Rangers would cross the plate in a 17-2 rout of RFK.

On an afternoon where seemingly nothing could go right for the team in red, the red-hot Rangers’ offense came alive, while pitchers Kenny Vasquez and Luca Parachieou silenced the Panther bats.

“I thought they played a great game,” said Forest Hills coach Marty Finkelstein. “They were sharp and they were heads up.”

The damage was done early, as Scherer’s drive to the warning track and Cassidy’s two-bagger gave Forest Hills a 5-1 cushion after two innings. The Rangers upped the ante to 9-1 on a succession of singles, tacking on a 10th run in the top of the third on a wild pitch that skidded past RFK catcher Stephen Colorundo. The lead ballooned to 13-1 on a run-scoring double by Danny Majares and a two-run bloop into left field by Jason Demers.

After a wild pitch yielded another run, Cohen inserted pitcher Brian Boeckler with the hopes that his staff’s ace could staunch the bleeding. Boeckler struggled with his control, pulled by Cohen after surrendering two walks and a hit in only a third of an inning. The hit parade continued, as Parachieou laced a two-run triple to right field and scored on an infield hit by Scherer to increase Forest Hills’ advantage to 17-1.

While the Rangers were keyed by their potent offensive display and stingy pitching, Finkelstein attributed his club’s success this season to a different team strength.

“We have tremendous chemistry on this team,” he said. “It’s part of winning. We could not have won [The ‘B’ city championship] last year without that tremendous chemistry.”

Forest Hills has relied on the one-two punch of pitchers Vasquez and Parachieou to stagger their opponents this season, the left-hander Vasquez the workhorse starter, the hard-throwing Parachieou the stopper out of the bullpen. Vasquez got the start Friday, yielding two runs on two hits over three innings, while Parachieou tossed three scoreless innings in relief.

“We’ve been relying on them all year,” said Finkelstein. “We’re going to ride them as long as we can.”

On a day in which Cohen and Robert F. Kennedy were hard-pressed to take anything positive away from the blowout, the coach stressed that his team had been out of sync and that it would regroup.

“We’ve been competitive in every game, losing by only a few runs,” said Cohen. “The hitting has been our biggest obstacle. I’m just waiting for that game when our offense really breaks out.”

Cohen was encouraged by the play of sophomore catcher Colorundo.

“He really took three steps forward today,” the coach said. “I was really impressed with the way he was blocking balls behind the plate, especially on a field like this without a backstop.”

Finkelstein and his team enjoyed the opportunity of playing on the manicured diamond at St. John’s.

“It was terrific,” said Finkelstein. “I’d like to play here more often.”

Finkelstein is optimistic about his team’s chances of defending its Class ‘B’ city title.

“If we stay healthy,” Finkelstein said, “and everyone plays to their potential, we’re going to have a good shot at repeating. The league has tightened up this year. We’ve won three games by two runs. But the kids are working hard. I like our chances.”

The win pushed Forest Hills’ record to 6-0, while RFK fell to 5-5 overall, 3-5 in league B-II.

Bayside 10, Hillcrest 0. The Commodores shutout the Hawks, as Chaim Malka earned the win and provided some offensive spark with two hits and two runs scored. Bayside is now 7-5-1 overall and 5-2 in league play.

Cleveland 9, Long Island City 3. Jose Abreu had two hits and three RBIs, while Eddie Torres added two hits and two RBIs for the Indians, now 8-8 overall and 3-4 in Queens A-II.

Campus Magnet 8, Far Rockaway 2. The Bulldogs were led by Jason Griffiths, who had three hits, as Magnet improved to 3-3 in league play.

Edison 15, Hillcrest 2. Ariel Rodrigues provided all the offense the Inventors would need, going a perfect 3-for-3 at the plate, including a home run, and driving in six.

Bayside 14, Van Buren 1. The Commodores’ Roger Mischel tossed a no-hitter, striking out 10 Friday.

Bushwick 11, Franklin K. Lane 9. Lane dropped a close one last week, as Carlos Aviles’ three-run double led Bushwick.

John Adams 3, Beach Channel 1. Xavier Carpio got the win for the Spartans, allowing just two hits and striking out five through five innings.

Queens Vocational 10. Renaissance 0. Luis Toribio held Renaissance hitless and fanned seven, handing Queens Voc its fifth league win.

Edison 14, Hillcrest 1. The lone run for the Hawks against inventors’ starter Joel Duran came on a balk. Duran gave up just one hit while striking out five in the win. Ariel Rodrigues provided a bulk of the offense with two doubles, four stolen bases, three RBIs and three runs scored.

Cleveland 7, Bowne 3. Pitcher Eddie Torres allowed only one earned run and six hits through six innings as the Indians defeated the Wildcats.

Cardozo 3, Francis Lewis 2. The Judges moved into sole possession of first place in Queens A-III Thursday behind pitcher Danny Rosenbluth’s two-hitter. Cardozo’s Bernie Estevez drove home Phil Kim for the winning run off Patriots’ ace Jonathan Lewis in the bottom of the seventh.

Newtown 18, Aviation 17. The Pioneers outlasted Aviation in this slugfest Thursday. John Carter drove in seven runs, including the game-winner in the seventh, while teammate Jeffrey Taveras was a perfect 5-for-5, scoring four times.

Long Island City 5, Bryant 2. LIC hung on to beat the Owls thanks to the relief pitching of Brian O’Lenick and John Dervoulakos’ two-run double in the seventh. The win was LIC’s fifth straight in league play.

Townsend Harris 16, Queens Vocational 8. The Hawks needed solid relief work from Erkhan Murad, who got the win, and three RBIs from Larry Manis to top Queens Voc.

Bayside 10, Van Buren 0. Chaim Malka had a double and two RBIs, while Commodores’ pitcher Anthony McCarty was near-perfect, allowing just two hits and one walk with six Ks.

Robert F. Kennedy 10, Renaissance 3. Alex Hotzoglou was a perfect 4-for-4 with three RBIs, but the big blow came from John Acosta, who smacked a bases-loaded double.

Forest Hills 12, Arts & Business 5. Jordan Bellish got the win for the Rangers, fanning nine, as Luca Pararshieiou smacked four hits and drove in three.

John Adams 19, Grand Street Campus 9. The Spartans exploded offensively in this league contest, as Sean Bell and John Lluberes combined for eight hits and five RBIs. Calos Guzman added three hits and five RBIs for the victors.

Richmond Hill 6, Franklin K. Lane 2. Jorge Rivera earned the win, striking out six, and Carlos Lapaz drove in three while going 2-for-4.

Cleveland 14, Bowne 4. Deurin Calcano and Dan Fruggiero both had two hits and drove in three for the Indians.

Cardozo 17, Bayside 5. The Judges pounded cross-town rival Bayside, as Brian Rosen and Landon Veissey both smacked three-run homers.

Townsend Harris 7, Robert F. Kennedy 3. Murad was again the catalyst for the Hawks, with four hits and one RBI.

Long Island City 15, Newtown 4. Brian O’Lenik had three hits and three RBIs for the winners as Luis Tavares got the win on the mound.

Van Buren 12, Hillcrest 1. Brian Berg was the story for Van Buren early last week, pitching six innings and allowing just one hit and fanning 12, while going 3-for-3 at the plate and driving in three.

Bayside 7, Cardozo 5. Roger Mischel’s two-run homer in the seventh provided the winning margin for the Commodores. Rich Henry got the win, striking out nine.

Edison 5, Francis Lewis 2. Mark Carias got the win for the Inventors in a game tied at 2 in the fifth inning when Jasser Valerio was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded.

Aviation 15, Cleveland 5. Jose Carrios went deep twice for the Aviators, driving in six and helping pitcher Vincent Lindner to the win.

John Adams 11, Richmond Hill 1. The Spartans’ Lluberes and Xavier Carpio both had three hits as Lluberes earned the win.

Arts & Business 13, Renaissance 8. Abel Curiel and Raffi Garcia had two RBIs apiece for the winners.

— Anthony Bosco contributed to this story

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