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Lewis baseball scorches Newtown in 9-2 win

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It’s been a disturbing trend for the Francis Lewis baseball team and early against Newtown Friday, it appeared the trend of ace Mario Santiago receiving no support offensively or defensively would continue, as the senior hurler found himself in a 1-0 hole without giving up a hit, victimized by a pair of errors to shortstop Kyle Jamison.

Thankfully for Santiago, the trend lasted just one inning, as the Patriots provided plenty of run support and the defense came up big to stop a couple of Newtown rallies in a big 9-2 victory at Francis Lewis.

The win keeps Lewis (6-2-1 Queens East A) in striking distance of first-place Cardozo and erases the bad memories of a 7-4 loss to previously winless Van Buren two days earlier.

“We pulled together,” said Santiago, who scattered four hits, struck out eight and allowed one earned run. “This was the best hitting game we’ve had. We’ve struggled in other games, but we came up big today.”

Newtown (1-5 Queens West A), a team that on paper should be among the best in the borough, had its chances to increase its one-run lead in the second and third innings, but the Pioneers left empty-handed on a pair of inning-ending double plays.

In the second, Newtown coach Neil Rosenblatt called for a suicide squeeze, as John Amarante, who doubled to left-center and advanced to third on a wild pitch, broke for the plate. But Tommy Mejia popped up the bunt attempt. Lewis third baseman Chiang Yi Chang made the catch and tagged out Amarante to end the inning.

In the third inning, Newtown loaded the bases with one out, but Cristian Acevedo grounded the ball to Jamison, who turned the 6-4-3 double play to thwart that rally.

“We have tremendous talent and that’s what makes it frustrating,” Rosenblatt said. “We’re not a 1-5 ball club, we shouldn’t be.”

Newtown pitcher Rene Valerio walked Evan Moglin and Jamison to lead off the bottom of the third and John Tibay provided the big hit, blasting a two-run triple to right-center to give the Patriots a 2-1 lead. Tibay then scored on Chang's groundout to second.

“I struck out my first at-bat, so I choked up a bit and adjusted. Thank God I got a hit,” said Tibay, who is batting .318 this season. “I just had to protect the plate. I didn’t know the ball would go that far, but a triple? Thank you very much.”

Newtown cut its deficit in half when Jeff Gomez drove in Jovan Vargas, running for Valerio, with a double to center field in the top of the fourth. Jamison made sure the Pioneers didn’t score again, as he wisely threw to third to catch Gomez trying to advance on a ground ball to short.

Francis Lewis added two more runs in the fourth, highlighted by Joe Silva’s pinch-hit RBI-triple to left field and scored four runs in the sixth, including a bases-clearing double by Matt Adams.

Forest Hills 10, Renaissance 3. Matt Bush allowed two earned runs on two hits and struck out five for Forest Hills (14-9, 6-2 Queens North B).

John Adams 9, Newtown 3. Kervin King struck out six in a four-hitter for Adams (21-5-1, 9-0 Queens West A).

Francis Lewis 6, Edison 0. Mike Guarnieri allowed just two hits and struck out six for the Patriots.

Franklin K. Lane 3, Townsend Harris 0. Melvin Cartagana’s two-run homer in the first inning paced Lane (7-0 Queens Central B).

John Bowne 10, Long Island City 0. Miek Alpers tossed the shutout for Bowne (5-4 Queens East A).

Cardozo 6, Grand Street Campus 1. Landon Veissey was 3-for-4 with an RBI and Danny Rosenbluth tossed a three-hitter with four strikeouts for Cardozo (7-0 Queens East A).

Van Buren 5, Aviation 1. Jason Pezzotti struck out seven and allowed five hits and Jose Diaz went 1-for-2 with two RBIs to lead Van Buren (2-9 Queens East A) to its second straight win.

Richmond Hill 5, Edison 2. Jorge Rivera’s two-run single in the bottom of the fourth snapped a 4-4 deadlock.

Robert F. Kennedy 6, Beach Channel 5. Bryan Hipsman struck out five for RFK (4-2 Queens Central B).

Reach Associate Sports Editor Dylan Butler by e-mail at Timesledger@aol.com or call 229-0300, Ext. 143.

Posted 7:03 pm, October 10, 2011
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