LACONIA — The Laconia Muskrats (11-12) won three out of four games this week but failed to gain any ground on the streaking Sanford Mainers. Sanford has won nine out their last ten. "It was a great week for us," Said Noah Crane, Muskrats general Manager. "We are starting to realize our potential. When we get quality starting pitching we are very difficult to beat." The team's pitching staff has a pint-sized earned run average of 2.06 over the last seven days. Muskrat bats have been active, hitting .313 over the same span. "The top of our order has been incredibly dangerous," Crane added. "Both (Braxton) Martinez (St Louis) and Colton Bottomley (Florida Gulf Coast) are hitting over .400 for the year." Martinez won player of the week honors last week by the NECBL.
The Muskrats have rescheduled three home games that were postponed. The first make-up is the Belknap Landscape Night game on July 17 against the Keene Swamp Bats. Admission is free for all who attend. Mystic will visit on the 23rd and Keene will be back again for a double header on the 29th of July. First pitch is at 3 p.m.
Laconia's second three game win streak of the season began on Saturday in Vermont, beating the Mountaineers 11-0. The Muskrats scored early and often, opening up the first inning with a two run homer by Martinez. Laconia added four more in the second and another in the third. The two runs proved plenty for Jack English (Florida Gulf Coast), who went seven innings in the win. English struck out five while giving up three hits and walking three.
The offense continued to score at will in a 7-3 win over the Newport Gulls. Martinez homered for the second day in a row, going 2-3 with two RBI and a run scored. Shea Spitzbarth (Molloy College) earned the win, striking out seven and giving up a run over six innings. Spitzbarth is second in the league with 29 strikeouts on the season.
Laconia beat Vermont for the second time in three days, but the Mountaineers earned one back at home on Wednesday, beating the Muskrats 6-1. Mariano Rivera (Iona) rolled unscathed through the first four innings before giving up a run in the fifth and three more in the sixth. The Muskrats scored their only run in the top of the ninth.
The Muskrats were in Danbury last night. The team will host North Adams tonight, head to Holyoke tomorrow, and host New Bedford on Sunday. All four opposing teams have a losing record. "We have a great opportunity to gain some ground this week. This is a really good team and a lot of fun to watch. I hope the town will come out and support them," Crane said.