Welch, Sweeney Post eliminate Bedford
NASHUA — Connor Welch got himself out of a bases-loaded jam in the first inning, then his offense provided more than enough help as Manchester’s Sweeney Post eliminated Bedford with an 11-0 win Friday at the American Legion State Tournament at Holman Stadium.
The game was called after seven innings on the 10-run rule.
Sweeney plays today at 8 a.m. against either Lebanon or Dover.
“The key was that first inning,” said Sweeney assistant coach Ron Beaurivage. “(Welch) had bases loaded, no outs, he came back and struck out the side.”
Bedford stranded five runners in the first two innings. Manager Tim Conway said inexperience played a role in his team’s struggles.
“We were so hot for so long we kind of ran out. I think a little bit of it is nerves,” said Conway. “I didn’t use that excuse all year, that they were young, but it finally showed itself.”
Sweeney scored in the first six innings: one each in the first three, three in the fourth, four in the fifth and one in the sixth. It collected 15 hits.
“They could have opened it up in that first inning. Would have been a totally different game,” said Beaurivage. “Instead we come back and get a run next inning and stayed on top.”
“(Welch) battled back every time they got him in key situations,” said Beaurivage. “He threw strikes, we made some plays on defense, and the bats finally came to life.”
Ryan Boldwin led Sweeney, going 3-for-4 with a pair of singles, a triple and an RBI. Aaron Mersereau and Danny O’Connor each hit two singles and an RBI.
Welch contributed solo home run in the top of the third inning.
“When he gets his pitch he can hit it out of the park,” said Beaurivage. “For a 16-year-old kid, he’s got a lot of potential.”
Bedford starter Kyle Anderson lasted just four innings, giving up seven runs on eight hits, a walk and one hit batter. He struck out five.
Bedford mustered four hits. Micheal Kernan led the way, going 2-for-4 with a single and a double.
Sweeney lost its tournament opener Thursday to Hudson, 1-0. Bedford lost its opener, 6-1, to Rochester.