Mindful of the epic comeback needed to get past the Winged Beavers last time out, the Bears looked to play controlled baseball for the duration. As it turned out, however, Berkshire celebrated Senior Day with a wild walk-off finish, continuing their winning ways for the last home game.
Mohib Amin got the start, hurling heat to fellow senior Matt Renzi, who was making his debut behind the plate. Will Rhodes in right field, Bryan Bohaty at second base and Nic Greco as the extra hitter completed the fab five for one last time on the Field of Dreams. Avon moved out to a 5-1 lead after two, as the host squad hit the ball hard with little to show for it. After Amin settled down in the top of the third, the Bears closed to within two runs in the bottom of the inning. After that, things got weird.
Amin was expelled for bouncing the ball off the rubber to himself, requiring Jack Gustavson to take the hill. Gustavson showed his usual composure and put together three-plus strong innings in relief. Meanwhile, the Avon coach was nearly tossed for expressing his anti-authoritarian views of the umpire's strike zone. A phantom infield fly ruling (there was a runner on third only), a handful of balks called and uncalled, along with assorted other mayhem, kept players, coaches and fans guessing all afternoon. While Avon offered up some spectacular plays in the field, the home team committed six errors, generously allowing the Beavers to plate a dozen on the day.
There were many strong performers on the offensive side despite the visitors' best efforts with the leather. Max Way, just returned from the DL after a bad burrito experience, contributed a triple deuce, with two hits, two runs and two RBI; Gustavson equaled that feat. Greco managed two hits, and Jake Grant and Cody Lucey had two RBI each. Chris Cooke added another triple to the two he hit against Avon last time out. Pat Frey (multiple hard hit balls) and Henry Thomas (one hit and two walks) looked strong at the plate after a couple of tough games, and Thomas scored the winning run on a wild pitch in the bottom of the seventh.
"It wasn't pretty baseball," noted Coach K., "but it was kinda fun to watch." For their finale, the Bears will head to Canterbury this Saturday.