Print this story

Nashua wins 2011 FCBL Championship with a 8-3 win over Torrington. Story by Gary Robinson.

POSTED August 06, 2011
BY Timothy W. Gaffney
Twitter: @TimothyGaffney

Nashua Silver Knights manager, Mike Chambers, receives the first FCBL Championship Trophy from Commissioner Chris Hall after the Silver Knights beat the Torrington Titans by an 8-3 score. Nashua takes the best of three series 2-0 and goes home with the 2011 hardware.

TORRINGTON-It's a tough combination; great hitting and deep pitching. The Nashua Silver Knights had a great deal of both and used it to earn the first ever Futures Collegiate Baseball League Championship Friday night at Fuessenich Park.

The Silver Knights defeated the Titans in two straight games, winning 12-0 in game one and 8-3 in game two.

In the two games, Nashua scored a total of 20 runs on a whopping 18 hits. The Titan’s starting pitchers, Gavin McCullough and Tyler Erikson, finished the regular season amongst the league leaders in strikeouts and ERA, but they were unsuccessful in slowing down the Silver Knight’s potent offensive attack.

“They have the deepest lineup in the league,” said Titan’s manager Gregg Hunt. “There is no easy guy in that lineup.”

After being pummeled by Nashua in game one, the Titans needed to bounce back quickly in game two.

Torrington’s Tyler Erikson got the nod in the do-or-die game in the series, despite having thrown nine innings just three days prior.

To his credit, Erickson asked for the ball despite the short rest.

Erikson and the Titans did not get off to their ideal start.

The first batter, Rob Benedict, reached on a base-on-ball and then advanced to third on an erant pick-off attempt. He was knocked home on a single by Logan Gillis.

Down 1-0, the Titans took back the lead in the bottom half of the inning when first baseman Andrew Spleth hit a towering two-run homerun to left.

The one run lead disappeared in the third when a single by Nashua’s John Putress pushed Matt Jacobs across the plate.

Unexpectedly, walks plagued the Titan’s pitchers all game as they walked an eye-popping 14 batters.

Hunt, who was tossed in the fifth inning for arguing balls and strikes with the home plate umpire, summed it up by saying, “today it just wasn’t a strike.”

The Silver Knights took advantage of the flustered Titans, putting up at least one run an inning from the fifth on.

“The mood took a downhill turn,” said Titan’s pitching coach Forrest Irwin.

Torrington’s bats were held silent all the way until the ninth, when catcher Ryan Plourde smashed a homerun over the left field fence.

The crowd of nearly 600 tried all they could to help will their Titans to victory, but the deficit was too steep.

Nashua finished the year with a league-best 29-16 record. Torrington was not far behind as they finished up with a 27-19 record.

“These guys deserve this,” said Nashua’s manager Mike Chambers. “They had great camaraderie all year.”

For more from Timothy W. Gaffney click here