WESTFORD — As Matthew Morash slid under Jack Blaine’s tag, the Westford Academy baseball team poured out of the dugout in celebration. Even a two-day marathon could not stop its undefeated season.
Jake Cullen threw 5.2 innings of one run baseball out of the bullpen while also delivering the game-tying double and Kevin Fitzgerald hit the walkoff sacrifice fly as WA outlasted Chelmsford, 3-2, in 11 innings to remain undefeated on Thursday afternoon.
Thursday’s play was a continuation of the game which began Wednesday before being halted in the bottom of the sixth inning due to rain. Chelmsford led 1-0 at the time of the stoppage.
“A tip off the cap to Chelmsford. They did not lose, we just scored an extra run today,” Westford Academy coach Mike Parent said. “Today was a great, emotional game. Our guys haven’t quit all year and it showed this afternoon.”
When play resumed Thursday it did not take long for Westford (17-0) to even the score. A two-out walk put the tying run on and Morash drove an RBI double to left to tie the game 1-1.
Cullen and Chelmsford reliever Caleb Stuart then followed the act of Morash and Matthew Stuart from Wednesday, as they marched zeroes until the 11th.
In the decisive frame, Chelmsford grabbed a 2-1 lead as a throwing error set up an RBI hit by Ryan Clark that put the visitors on top.
Westford, however, got the last laugh. An error started the stanza and a wild pitch coupled with an intentional walk put two on with one out.
That set the stage for Cullen, who helped himself out with a tying double down the right field to even the game 2-2. Two batters later – after an intentional walk loaded the bases – Fitzgerald flied a ball to medium depth. Morash tagged up and broke for the plate and slid just around the tag to keep the Ghosts undefeated.
“I thought I was safe and got around it,” Morash said. “We’re just trying to take an approach of focusing on what’s in front of us and playing our best game of the season each time we play.”
The game was scoreless on Wednesday for the first five innings before a Caleb Stuart safety squeeze brought home the first run of the game in the top of the sixth. Lions starter Matthew Stuart threw five hitless innings to begin the contest but could not return Thursday due to pitch count.