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WEYMOUTH, Mass. (June 22, 2021) -- The Westfield Starfires swept the Futures Collegiate Baseball League’s third installment of weekly awards for the 2021 season after winning three straight games -- and six in their most recent 10-game span -- to move within one game of a top-four position in the standings.
The Brockton Rox still remain in first, but an 8-2 run has helped the Norwich Sea Unicorns vault into a second-place tie with the Pittsfield Suns. All three of those teams enter Tuesday’s action with a league-high 13 wins on the season.
78 SPORTS PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Jaden Brown, Westfield Starfires
Iowa Western Community College
Hometown: Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
Brown was the offensive catalyst behind Westfield’s outstanding week, recording multiple hits in five straight games to finish the week 13-for-26 with a double, three runs scored and nine RBI. He helped to lead the Starfires with a pair of three-hit, three-RBI efforts in wins over Brockton and Vermont. In total, Brown’s 15 RBI in 11 games this summer are six more than any other Westfield player and put him in a tie for third in the league.
CHANGEUP PITCHER OF THE WEEK
Noah Lewis, Westfield Starfires
University of Maine
Hometown: South Portland, Maine
Lewis earned his second consecutive win to begin his stint with Westfield, pitching 7.1 no-hit innings to begin Sunday’s 10-2 win over Vermont. The reigning America East Conference All-Rookie righty allowed just one baserunner in that span before a triple and a home run in the eighth inning drove home the only two Lake Monsters runs of the day. Lewis finished the longest outing by a FCBL pitcher this summer (eight innings) with 10 strikeouts, one shy of matching the high mark.
NEWS AND NOTES
SEA UNICORN STREAK: Norwich had a five-game win streak snapped Friday against Worcester before bouncing back to shut out Nashua. Outfielder Tremayne Cobb Jr. (Hartford) homered twice in Tuesday’s win over the Silver Knights, while two players from nearby Mitchell College had strong weeks as All-New England outfielder Hunter Yaworski logged six hits in four games and righty Kenny Heon struck out 10 in five shutout, two-hit innings.
UN-BEE-LIEVABLE: New Britain outfielder Ryan Bagdasarian (Eastern Connecticut) went 5-for-5 with a double and two RBI in a 7-6 Saturday win over Pittsfield. The returning Bee’s five hits are a season-high for a FCBL player and highlighted his 11-for-21 week that included three straight wins for the team, while his college and summer teammate Luke Broadhurst has a league-leading four home runs after going deep in three straight games last week.
LOCAL HITTING HOMERS ... AND THROWING K'S: After helping Salisbury win the Division 3 national championship this spring, Vermont outfielder and hometown Burlington native Sky Rahill joined the Lake Monsters on Saturday before making Lake Monster history by becoming the first-ever native Vermonter to homer for the team the next day against Westfield. Future UConn pitcher Owen Kellington helped U-32 High School win Vermont's Division 2 state title before joining the Lake Monsters for a Saturday start during which he tossed two shutout innings.
ANOTHER LOCAL HITTING HOMERS: Worcester outfielder Nick Martin (Westfield State) became the 12th player in league history -- and just the second Braveheart -- to hit a home run in three different seasons. The Shrewsbury, Mass., native left the yard last Wednesday against Vermont to help the Bravehearts begin a four-game win streak.
TOP TOTAL: The Pittsfield Suns recorded a league-high 24 total bases in just six innings at the plate during their 9-5 win over Westfield during a Friday doubleheader. The team’s eight extra-base hits included home runs by the outfield trio of Jack Cooney (Springfield), Javier Rosales (Long Beach State) and Trent Taylor (Central Florida).
ROCKING THE BASEBALL: Three of the league's top five extra-base hit leaders are in the Brockton Rox lineup. Infielders Patrick Roche (Boston College) and Erick Ramirez (UMass Dartmouth) have both recorded eight, and outfielder Ben Rounds (Harvard) has seven. Vermont's Noah Granet (Princeton) leads the way with 10. Roche's .549 slugging percentage is also a league-high, while Ramirez has scored the most runs (16) and Rounds and outfielder Michael Golankiewicz (Merrimack) rank atop the RBI category.
A GOOD KNIGHT: The Nashua Silver Knights snapped a five-game skid with Friday’s 3-2, 10-inning win over Vermont. After Wyatt Scotti (Northeastern) pitched seven innings of two-run ball, Nick Remy (UMBC) fanned six over the final three shutout frames and catcher Nate Goranson (William & Mary) drew a bases-loaded walk to deliver the walk-off win.
BACK TO THE FUTURES: Don’t forget to tune into “Back to the Futures,” the FCBL’s official podcast with hosts Owen Shadrick and Johnny Maffei! Their most recent guests were Nashua Silver Knights pitching coach Ariel Ramos and Golankiewicz.
BACK ON NESN: The FCBL is excited for the continuation of its television partnership with New England Sports Network (NESN). The NESN lineup on the last four Saturdays of July will include a televised FCBL game at noon, beginning with the Worcester Bravehearts hosting the Pittsfield Suns on July 10 at Hanover Insurance Park at Fitton Field.