NEW BRITAIN - The New Britain Bees scored first and then last, but it was the middle innings that made the difference in Thursday night’s game against the Lancaster Barnstormers.
UConn alum Greg Nappo was charged with three runs in the sixth as the Bees were defeated 4-3.
The left-hander went 5 1/3 innings, struck out two and walked three.
Down three runs in the bottom of the ninth, New Britain attempted to rally against Kaohi Downing. In the end, the Bees came up just short.
Conor Bierfielt singled home Jovan Rosa, while a wild pitch during Jon Griffin’s at-bat two batters later brought in Craig Maddox. Griffin, however, grounded out to second to end the game.
Nappo cruised through his first five innings. The only mistake was surrendering an RBI double to Sean Halton in the second, allowing former Bee Cole Garner to score. And it was Halton again who gave Nappo trouble four innings later when the right-handed power hitter took the first pitch he saw over the wall for his 17th home run of the season.
Despite the four unanswered runs from Lancaster, it was New Britain which got on the scoreboard first when Rosa hit a solo shot in the bottom of the first.
Casey Coleman made his second appearance out of the Bees bullpen since rejoining the team after a stint with the Houston Astros Triple-A affiliate. The right-hander followed Nappo, tossing 1 2/3 scoreless innings. Brandon Fry then pitched a clean eighth, while Brandon League threw a scoreless ninth.
David Glovach can be reached at (860) 801-5085 or firstname.lastname@example.org