Palioca dominant in 8-0 Titans win over Rox.
TORRINGTON: In their last two games, both losses, the Torrington Titans had gotten in the habit of leaving far too many men on base.
On Wednesday night, the Titans stranded 10 in a 3-2 home loss to Wachusett, Thursday night six runners were stranded in a 3-2 road loss to Nashua.
Back home on Saturday night, the number still may have been too high at 10 again, but two big innings propelled the Titans to a 8-0 win over the Brockton Rox in front of 608 fans at Fuessenich Park.
Pitching has been the mainstay for head coach Misha Dworken and he got his sixth consecutive quality start to start the season as three pitchers combined on a three-hit shutout.
Alec Palioca has yet to give up a run this season and improved to 2-0 with five plus innings of two hit ball that included nine strikeouts.
The Wheaton College sophomore did not allow a hit until the fourth inning and continued to be the ace for the Titans on a staff that may end up with a few.
Two relievers, Michael Joseph (2.2 inn, hit, walk, 3 K’s) and Austin Bailey (1 inning, K) finished the job for Palioca in what was just a 3-0 game until a five run eighth inning blew this one open.
Torrington broke through for three in the top of the fourth off of Rox starter Vito Derna (Jones County Junior College), who deserved better in the inning.
Ryan Zielinski (Castleton State) started the rally with a grounder up the middle that was cut off by Rox second baseman Rob McCunney on the shortstop side of second on a tough play that he could not come up with.
Torrington’s own Conor Bierfeldt (Western Connecticut State) lined a single to right and the home team was in business with two on and no outs.
Ryan Plourde (Fairfield) continued to make things happen as he lined the first pitch he saw up the middle, scoring Zielinski with the games first run.
Here’s were it got tricky.A walk to Gus Craig (Columbia) loaded the bases with no outs.
Torrington had been in this position before over the last couple of games without any results.
When Kyle Murphy (Manhattan College) struck out and Brian Fracasso popped out to Derna, a familiar feeling made it’s way around Fuessenich Park.
This night though, the home team didn’t leave them full, even though they needed a little luck and some good hustle to plate two more.
Third basemen Jordan Serena hit a grounder back towards the mound that ticked off the front of the mound and over Derna’s head towards the second base bag.
The throw to first by Rox shortstop Tanner Reibenspies (San Diego State) was late to get Serena allowing Bierfeldt to score with Plourde, who never stopped running, right behind him.
The 3-0 lead was plenty for Torrington on Saturday night but the home team added five in the bottom of the eighth to put it away.
Torrington improves to 4-2 while the Rox fall to 2-6.
Andrew Lozzi (Wesley) throws for the Titans on Sunday as they pay a visit to Brockton with first pitch scheduled fro 1:05 p.m.
Lozzi came away with a no-decision in his first start on June 8 at North Shore, a game the Titans would come back to win by a 5-2 score.
Lozzi pitched five innings, giving up one earned run in five innings.