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Nipmuc Baseball Earns District Berth

The Nipmuc baseball team rattled off five straight victories down the stretch to secure a spot in the district tournament, and a strong second half in Dual Valley Conference play put the Warriors within striking distance of the league crown.
"After we got through the bulk of the non-league schedule, we had dug ourselves a bit of a hole record-wise," said head coach Steve Dellarovere, referring to his team's 4-8 record through the first 12 games of the year. "The guys stayed focused, they didn't get discouraged, and they got on a roll during the middle part of the year."
Nipmuc rattled off six wins in its next seven games to reach the 10-win mark on the season. A great deal of the success came in DVC play, and the Warrior's 5-3 league mark put them second behind Sutton and Hopedale, who tied for first.
The Warriors began the season with a lack of experience on the mound, but sophomore Jack Tempesta and junior J.P. Lucier emerged as the top two starters in the rotation.
"They have established themselves and it was nice to have that consistency," Dellarovere said. "At the beginning of the year, we were trying to figure things out. But as the year went on, we knew we could rely on them."
Junior Cole Alibozek and senior Zach Hunter have anchored the offense throughout the year, Dellarovere said, and solidified the middle of the order. The offense ended up being the biggest area of growth for the team through the spring.
"With an inexperienced team and the schedule we faced, not being able to score runs is something that held us back," Dellarovere said. "We saw more big innings late in the season, putting three or four hits together in a row and scoring multiple runs in an inning."
During the five-game winning streak, Nipmuc outscored foes by a combined score of 40-15, averaging eight runs per game. And they were able to showcase their depth. Dellarovere rarely trotted out the same lineup on back-to-back days, he said, and was able to count on contributions up and down the order. Senior Trevor Moutinho and junior Sean Downing helped boost the Warriors' depth, with Moutinho seeing time as a pinch hitter and defensive replacement and Downing holding down first base defensively.
"They did the little things that helped us win," Dellarovere said.
Nipmuc finished the regular season 10-10 overall and began the week awaiting its seed in the Central Mass tournament. 




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