Bennington dominates at home against Bellows Falls

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BENNINGTON — Bennington made quick work of visiting Bellows Falls on Wednesday afternoon, mercy-ruling their opponent with a 14-4 victory in five innings.

The home team only managed to register six hits all afternoon, but their patience at the plate is what lead them to the win, drawing 10 walks and another two free bases off a couple hit batters.

Their patient approach was on display in the bottom of the third inning, where the first seven batters reached either by a base on balls or hit-by-pitch. They had four players cross the plate before their first hit in the inning, a two run double smacked to deep right by clean-up hitter Caleb Hay. Seven Bennington players would cross the plate in the inning, and after three they were in complete control with a 13-3 advantage.

Ryan Audet got the start for Bennington. Audet was solid all afternoon, throwing a complete game The right-hander allowed four runs, two earned, throughout his complete game four-hitter.

Bellows Falls was able to plate two runs, both unearned, before Audet surrendered a hit. An error with one out in the second gave Bellows Falls their first base runner of the game, who later came around to score on a double steal. Bennington's Zack Swistak tried to gun down a runner at second, but was unable to get the out. The runner from third took off on the throw and was able to easily make it home to get the visitors on the scoreboard.

The second run, again unearned, once again came with runners on the corners, this time in the top of the third. Audet attempted to pick-off the runner at first and the ball sailed past Hay, plating Bellows Falls' number nine hitter Jack Burke.

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Audet stuck out four and walked four batters.

Pitching with an 11 run lead in the top of the fifth, Audet retired the first two batters in as many pitches. The next two batters tagged a pair of doubles off the right-hander, cutting the lead to 10. Audet then gave up a single before ending the game with a play at the plate. A soft dribbler found its way into the pitcher's hands, who tossed it to Swistak who was able to apply the tag before the runner touched the plate.

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Although only registering six hits on the afternoon, Bennington's lineup was well-balanced. Their lead-off man, Luke Trombley, reached base in all three of his plate appearances before being replaced in the fourth inning.

Along with generating momentum for his team by reaching base early on, Trombley is also always a threat to steal a base. Bennington batted-around the order in the bottom of the first. Trombley was able to reach base in both plate appearances in the inning, stealing second base both times.

"That's great when he gets on base because he's a great base runner too," said Bennington coach Bill Hay. "He's always put the ball in play, they're just starting to find some holes."

Bennington jumped on Bellows Falls early, scoring six in the first inning. The biggest hit of the inning came off the bat of their number nine hitter, Jake Tibbetts.

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Tibbetts connected with one, driving a two-out double with the bases loaded to left-center, scoring two and extending the inning.

Coach Hay was pleased with how balanced his lineup was on Wednesday.

"It's always great when the bottom of your lineup can reach base," Hay said. "Jake's seeing the ball well, he's had some good at-bats."

Tibbetts reached base in all three of his trips to the plate and scored twice. On top of the extra base hit, he drew a walk and reached on an error by the Bellows Falls left fielder.

Bennington plays a road game on Thursday against Lakes Region at 5:30 p.m.


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