NORTHBOROUGH, Mass. - Nighthawks freshman Justin Banks (Corona, Calif.) finished a home run short of the cycle on a 4-for-5 afternoon with three runs scored, helping the Newbury Nighthawks to an 8-4 victory over the Daniel Webster Eagles on Friday afternoon at the New England Baseball Complex in New England Collegiate Conference play.
Nighthawks junior Matthew Sobray (Santa Clarita, Calif.) batted 3-for-4, all singles and two runs scored. Junior Jim McGrorry (Oakhurst, N.J.) and senior Ian Hruniak (Lutz, Fla.) both finished 2-for-4, McGrorry added an RBI. Junior Matthew Peluso (Woodbridge, ONT, CAN) finished with three RBIs.
Eagles junior Mike Pelletier (Pelham, N.H.) batted 2-for-4 including an RBI double in the sixth. Sophomore Dan Mullins (Nashua, N.H.) finished 1-for-4 with a pair of RBIs. Junior Dylan McDonough (Billerica, Mass.) went 1-for-3 with two runs scored.
After not taking advantage of a bases-loaded opportunity in the first, the Eagles would strike for the lead in the second. With two on in scoring position, Mullins singled to center, scoring two for a 2-0 lead.
The Nighthawks tied things up with a run in the third on a Sobray single, scoring Banks, who doubled earlier in the inning and a run in the fourth from a bases loaded walk, tying the game at 2-2.
The Nighthawks struck for two more in the fifth, starting the inning with runners on second and third with no outs. An RBI groundout by Peluso scored Sobray for a 3-2 lead and a sacrifice fly by McGrorry scored David Center (Medford, Mass.) for a 4-2 lead.
The Eagles tied things up in their half of the sixth due to two on with no outs. An RBI groundout by junior Kyle Hodgdon (Cheshire, Conn.) followed by a two-out double by Pellitier tied the score at 4-4.
The Nighthawks again tipped the scales with two runs in the bottom of the sixth. A trio of singles by Banks, Sobray, and Center, moved players from base to base, eventually leading to the 6-4 lead.
More insurance came in the eighth on a two-out single by Peluso, scoring Sobray and Banks for an 8-4 lead.
Nighthawks senior Ethan Forrest (East Bridgewater, Mass.) pitched eight innings, allowing four runs on seven hits while striking out six. The win improves his record to 8-1.
Hodgdon took credit for the loss for the Eagles, allowing four runs on seven hits in four innings of work. He falls to 0-3 on the season.
The Nighthawks and Eagles meet again Saturday afternoon for a doubleheader in Nasua N.H. as the Nighthawks travel to Daniel Webster. First pitch is scheduled for 12:00 p.m.