Honesdale nearly rallied to win this non-league game at Dunmore
The 2016 high school baseball season is upon us and Honesdale appears to have one of the area's more intriguing teams.
While the Hornets will be led by three battle-tested seniors, several underclassmen are also poised to play key roles for Coach Mike Miller's squad.
"We're going to lean prettily heavily on our captains," the veteran skipper said. "That's a given. But, if we want to be competitive and make a run, our youngsters will have to step up as well."
On Thursday, all of those players were put to the test during a road trip to Dunmore. The Hornets started slowly against the Bucks, but staged a furious late-game rally.
Sadly for local fans who made the trek on a sun-soaked March afternoon, this seventh inning comeback bid came up just a bit short and suffered a 7-5 loss.
Honesdale returns to action Monday with another road trip, this one to West Scranton.
First pitch is set for 11 a.m. in the Electric City.
Spencer Goyette, Adam Kelly and Julio Galarza will serve as captains for this year's varsity squad.
All are experienced players who are looking to make their senior season a memorable one. Each made major contributions Thursday at Dunmore.
Goyette earned the starting nod and battled his way through two innings.
Spencer surrendered an unearned run in the first, but rebounded in the second. The veteran righty would notch three strikeouts and allow three basehits.
Dunmore surged ahead in the third, tagging Galarza for five runs. However, just two of those were earned as a pair of errors stung the Hornets.
Kelly played solid defense in center and batted clean-up. Adam reached base twice, scored one run and drove in another.
"Spencer, Julio and Adam aren't just our captains, they are three of the best players in the league," Coach Miller said.
"If we want to have a successful season, those three kids have to excel at the plate and in the field."
As expected, several young Hornets stepped into the spotlight on Thursday.
Nate Frigoletto was the first of three youngsters to toe the rubber in relief of Goyette and Galarza.
A tall, crafty southpaw, Frigoletto pitched a scoreless fourth. He worked around a one-out walk before retiring the side on a strikeout and flyout.
Next up on the mound was Andy Carroll. Another member of a talented freshman class, the hard-throwing righty kept the Bucks under control in the fifth.
Jack Dennis closed things out. The final frosh was nicked for an unearned run, but bounced back with a pair of strikeouts.
And speaking of frosh: Anthony Dell'Aquila turned in a solid effort behind the plate. He banged out two hits, scored a run and earned high marks from his mentor.
"Anthony has a very bright future," a smiling Coach Miller said. "If he keeps working as hard as he has been, Anthony is going to be a very good player."
Honesdale trailed 7-1 heading into the top of the seventh.
However, Hornet bats finally came to life in what proved to be their final frame.
David Curreri ignited the rally with a lead-off walk. Dell'Aquila followed with a single, which set the stage for three straight RBIs courtesy of Kelly, Galarza and Jack Rickard.
Carroll chased home the final run via an infield single and throwing error.
Unfortunately for the Red & Black faithful, Dunmore eventually recorded the last out and stumbled off with a 7-5 decision.
"I'll tell you what: I'm definitely encouraged by what I saw today," Coach Miller said. "We made some errors and some mental mistakes early on, but the kids never quit.
“If we clean those things up, we're going to win some games.”
Score by Innings...
HON 0 0 0 0 0 1 4 - 5
DUN 1 0 5 0 0 1 x - 7