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Griffin Weir, Justin Mott lead Amherst Comets past Firelands Falcons
MORNING JOURNAL/SAM GREENE Firelands second baseman Joel Lawson attempts to turn a double play in the bottom of the fourth inning on Saturday.
MORNING JOURNAL/SAM GREENE Amherst’s Griffin Weir takes a swing during the third inning against Firelands on Saturday.
MORNING JOURNAL/SAM GREENE Amherst second baseman Zach Bires tosses the ball to shortstop Kody Bledsoe during the top of the fifth inning against Firelands on Saturday.
Mott went 2-for-4 with a double, a home run and four RBIs, and he struck out the side in the seventh inning to give the Comets the win.
Weir, pitching for the first time in nearly a year, started and went 3 2/3 innings, giving up one run on two hits and striking out six. He also had an RBI single in the bottom of the first which put Amherst up for good.
“I’m excited for the year and it’s nice to get this first one out of the way,” Rositano said.
The Comets got to work quickly with three runs in the first and third innings off of Firelands starter Joe San Felippo (0-1), who went five innings and gave up six runs on nine hits. Amherst got an RBI single by Weir and a two-run double by Mott to grab the quick 3-0 lead.
A hit batsman with the bases loaded in the third made it 4-0, followed by a Corey Stamco RBI single and an RBI walk drawn by Connor Morris to make it 6-0.
That was all the Amherst (1-0) pitching staff needed as Firelands only had two hits on the afternoon — both coming in the top of the second inning off of Weir.
“I thought we improved as the game went on,” Firelands coach Ted Busch said. “The defense got better, and I told them I was proud to see that the improvement was there. The more time we’ll get outside, the better we’ll get.”
The Falcons got on the board in the fourth after Weir walked in Joel Lawson, which brought home Jacob Abrahamowicz, who had one of his team’s two hits, a double off Weir in the second. An error in center by Amherst’s Connor Morris on a ball hit by Frank Johnson in the fifth allowed San Felippo to score to make it 6-2.
Mott got both of those runs back in the bottom of the six with a one-out, two-run home run to left.
“Justin’s a baseball player,” Rositano said. “You could probably put Justin at any position on the field and he’d excel. He has a really good arm, we like him back behind the plate. He had 36 RBIs last year and just picked up where he left off.”
Rositano was particularly pleased to give Weir some innings on Saturday after he only pitched four last season due to injury. Weir did let the last three hitters he faced reach base in the fourth, but started strong to help the Comets shut down a potent Falcons lineup.
“He’s been throwing well inside, and he looked good today,” Rositano added. “His brother had the (radar) gun on him and he was about 92 (mph) again today. You can overpower a lot of hitters like that. He did what we asked him for.
“We wanted to get him four innings, but his pitch count got up there. He got 3 2/3. But that’s what we’re looking for and that’s what we’re going to look for when he gets his conference starts.”
Amherst’s Alex Walts went 2-for-3 with a double, RBI and run scored.
Amherst 8, Firelands 2
Firelands (0-1) 000 110 0 — 2 2 0
Amherst (1-0) 303 002 x — 8 10 1
TWO HITS OR MORE — Amherst: Alex Walts, Justin Mott; 2B — Firelands: Jacob Abrahamowicz; A: Walts, Mott; HR — A: Mott; WP — Griffin Weir (1-0); LP — Joe San Felippo (0-1).
Last Updated: 3/30/2013 8:48:37 PM EST