MERIDEN - The Bristol Legion picked up its first win of the season in a back and forth contest
with Meriden Post 45. Featuring a more complete roster, unlike the season opener against Avon, Bristol pulled out a 6-4 behind almost five innings of work from Andrew Lozier.
Lozier tossed four and two thirds innings of work, highlighted by eight strikeouts, before his pitched count forced him out of the game for Matt Beaucar. Lozier’s day was cut short by a 32-pitch second inning that ate up much of his availability for the day.
“It was good that we had the full team here today,” coach Jerry LaPenta said. “It’s a whole different thing when you have guys playing in the right spots, playing where they should be.”
Offensively, Bristol got started early and held a three-run lead after the first half-inning. A single from Adam Caron, a double from Lozier and a walk from Zack Rinkavage loaded the bases for Jack Kozikowski, who opened the scoring with a single.
Meriden scored its first run in the fourth inning and then added three more to take the lead in the fifth, starting with consecutive doubles from Dylan Gay and Max Giacco. A hit batter and a walk loaded the bases and a sacrifice fly from Owen Papciak scored the next run. Lozier reached his pitch limit getting the next batter out on a ground ball to second base and then Beaucar got the next batter out to escape the inning trailing 4-3.
“Matt Beaucar came in an he pitched really well, there were some pressure spots there,” LaPenta said. “I thought Andrew pitched well. A couple of innings he struggled a little bit, but he got through it.”
Bristol tied the game in the top of the sixth without getting a hit, courtesy of three walks and a fielder’s choice. The team took the lead in the next inning by adding two runs on just one hit as Meriden’s pitching struggles continued and Bristol was able to move runners around the bases without putting the ball in play very much. Four different players stole bases in the inning and three of them got on base with walks or being hit by a pitch. Rinkavage picked up an RBI with a sacrifice fly.
“To come back after they tied it and get the lead back was huge,” LaPenta said. “You always have to get that first win out of the way and that was a great feeling.”