BURLINGTON, VT — Gio Cueto’s two-out RBI groundball RBI single to left snapped a 4-4 tie in the bottom of the 10th inning to give Vermont Lake Monsters a 5-4 Futures League victory over the Westfield Starfires Thursday night at historic Centennial Field.
The victory reduced Vermont’s magic number to clinch its second straight FCBL regular-season title to one, while the Lake Monsters are 24 games over .500 (39-15) for the first time in the franchise’s 28 seasons.
Vermont started the bottom of the first inning with three straight base hits, including a Jimmy Evans (Tufts) two-run single for the quick 2-0 lead. The Starfires tied the game with a pair of runs in the seventh, but the Lake Monsters retook the lead in the bottom of the inning on a two-out RBI double from Jordan Kelly (Princeton), who then scored on a Starfires fielding error.
Westfield battled back to tie the game 4-4 in the ninth on a two-out, two-run double sending the game to the 10th inning. After holding the Starfires scoreless in the top of the inning, Lake Monsters got a one-out walk from Cooper Kelly (Kansas), who went to second on a wild pitch. After an intentional walk and flyout, pinch runner Zach Lewis (Wake Forest) scored on Cueto’s (Wake Forest) two-out RBI walkoff single.
Wyatt Cameron 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 SO
Jordan Kelly 1-for-4, R, 2B, RBI
Gio Cueto 1-for-4, walkoff RBI single
* Starter Colton Regen (Vanderbilt) allowed 3 hits, 4 walks, 4 strikeouts in 3 2/3 scoreless innings, which included working out of bases loaded jam in 3rd with 1-2-3 DP and strikeout
* Wyatt Cameron (NE College) came on in relief in the 7th with the game tied 2-2, runners on 2nd-n-3rd with 0 outs and worked out of jam with a line out and 2 strikeouts.
* George Goldstein (Middlebury) loaded the bases top 9th on hit batter, single and walk, then almost got out of jam with a strikeout and forceout at home before giving up the 2-run double (pitched scoreless 10th for win)
* After the 3 straight hits to start bottom 1st, Vermont had just 1 hit (leadoff bunt single in 3rd) before the Kelly RBI double in 7th (Westfield outhit the Lake Monsters 10-6 overall)
Beyond The Boxscore
* Vermont (39-15) has won 13 of their last 17 games and have franchise-best record after 54 games (33-21 in 1996 NYPL Championship season)
* Lake Monsters Magic Number is 1 to clinch FCBL regular-season title (1 Vermont win or 1 loss by both Nashua and New Britain over last 9 games)
* 4th walkoff win of the season for Vermont and the 2nd 10th inning walkoff (June 7th vs. Pittsfield).
Next Game: Friday at Westfield, 6:30pm
Next Home Game: August 4th vs. Worcester, 6:35pm