Early-season showdown turns into laugher

Chris Lucarelli and his Skippers teammates have started the season with four wins from five games.

It was an early-season showdown between two of the top teams in the Greenport Men’s Softball League. But when Marcello Masonry mauled Founders Tavern, 16-1, on June 8 in a mercy-rule-shortened, five-inning game at the Polo Grounds in Greenport, there was no doubt who the hotter team was.

Marcello scored four times in the first inning and added five more in the second to take control of this game right away. Scott Anderson’s three-run double was the big blow in the second-inning rally.

After tacking on a pair of runs in the fourth, Marcello ended the game in the fifth with five more runs. Herb Loper smacked a two-run homer and Derek Genoino’s solo homer capped the rout.

Brian Anderson led Marcello (6-0) by going 3 for 3, with three runs batted in. Loper and Matt Hansen each had two hits. John Hansen, Marcello’s winning pitcher, hurled a superb game, quieting the previously sizzling Founders bats.

“I had the ball up there pretty good,” Hansen said of his pitching arc. “It felt good.”

Founders’ Jon Schlachter said his team just couldn’t get anything going offensively against Hansen.

“John pitched a good game,” Schlachter said. “We didn’t hit and they did. We made some uncharacteristic errors. It was just one of those games.”

Founders’ next showdown game against Skippers (4-1) was postponed by rain the following night. But on Friday night Founders (5-1) came out fired up and pounded Pete’s Boys, 19-2. From top to bottom, the Founders’ lineup was red hot. Ed Michaelis went 4 for 4 while Carl Ruthinoski, Schlachter, Rob Stanevich, and Dan Olstad added three hits each. Stanevich had a homer and double, and finished with four runs batted in. Michaelis, Ruthinoski and Schlachter all drove in a pair of runs.

“The loss to Marcello was a wake-up call,” Schlachter said. “It really fired us up.”

In Friday’s other game, Marcello continued to roll along, pounding Pool King, 19-1. Bobby Marcello went 3 for 3. Scott Anderson launched a pair of homers and Hansen also went deep.

“We’re in a comfortable spot right now,” Hansen said. “We’re just playing and having fun.”

In other action, Southold Fish Market (3-2) won its third game in a row topping, Claudio’s, 12-7, on June 7. Ryan Osmer and Dave Angevine both went 4 for 4 to lead Southold Fish Market to the win. Trailing by 8-4, Claudio’s pulled to within a run in the fifth on a three-run homer off the bat of Ned Baker. But Jeff Dinizio and Chris Doucett each belted a two-run homer to help Southold Fish Market hold on for the victory. Brady Ulmet had two hits for Claudio’s.

“We started slow, but we’re starting to get going,” Southold Fish Market’s Warren Bondarchuk said. “Now we’ve got Skippers, Founders Tavern and Marcello Masonry coming up. It is either going to get us going or we’ll hit the bottom.”

The next night, Claudio’s (1-4) picked up its first win of the season by beating Pete’s Boys, 7-1. Greg Cochio, Baker and John Condon all had two hits for Claudio’s. Baker also scored a pair of runs.

Claudio’s Manager Matt Vescovi felt that battling Southold Fish Market in such a tight, competitive game gave his team a boost. “It was like a boxing match,” he said. “We had them on the ropes, but we couldn’t knock them out. But it showed our young team just how far we have come.”