BRIDGEWATER, NJ - Under the lights at TD Bank Ballpark, home of the Somerset Patriots, the Pioneers of New Providence were unable to elevate their play as they dropped a dual Senior Night game against their rivals from Springfield. Seniors Brendan Farley, Will Faucher, Michael Magnani, Eric Martin, Nick Mohan, Joe Nave, Brendan O’Leary, Nick Pecoraro, and Max Rivkees, the night’s starting pitcher, all were honored before the game and saw action at the plate and in the field as well throughout the game.
“This senior class is very exciting,” said head coach Chris Brodeur. “They really love the game of baseball and it’s their passion that drives us to do the things we want to do.”
“The fact that they are very much involved with early day workouts and team bonding activities make it a really nice group of guys for the team.”
Both Rivkees and Dayton’s starting pitcher Joe Kastner got off to fast starts as the first two innings flew by where neither team was able to put any runs across the plate.
That changed in the top of the third where things began to unravel for Rivkees. Dayton was able to put four runs on the board in that frame and it became a deficit that New Providence could not make up in the remainder of the game.
Both teams went silent until the bottom of the fifth when the Pioneers threatened Dayton for the first time of the entire game. After a leadoff walk, Eric Martin singled for New Providence’s first hit of the game, putting runners on the corners with one out.
Hopes of a comeback were quickly extinguished after a sacrifice fly by Brendan Farley, no further damage could be done by the Pioneers.
“We were a little rushed in our approach,” said Brodeur speaking on his team’s offensive struggles. “We like to take a little bit of a more relaxed approach and we weren’t able to get into that rhythm.”
“But you have to tip your cap to the Dayton pitcher. He was throwing strikes and keeping us off balance.”
Dayton tacked on three more runs in the final two innings, capping off the game and dropping the Pioneers to 6-10 on the season.
Even though New Providence has struggled a bit as of late, Brodeur believes that his team will be in good shape the rest of the way as long as they keep improving every day.
“The name of the game is to keep improving every time you go out there,” said Brodeur. “I can’t really say one specific thing that we need to improve on; I think we need to get one percent better every day one step at a time.”
The Pioneers will look to bounce back on Tuesday when they battle Union Catholic at Paul Miller Field in New Providence. First pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m.