Baseball: Monsters Rally From Five Down, Beat Tigers 7-5

Courtesy Vermont Lake Monsters

NORWICH, CT — Behind the hitting of Noah Vaughan and Payton Squier, along with the relief pitching of Charlie Cerny and Brandon Withers, the Vermont Lake Monsters rallied from an early 5-0 deficit for a 7-5 New York-Penn League victory over the Connecticut Tigers Sunday evening at Dodd Stadium.

Vaughan had a two-run double in the third that cut the Lake Monsters deficit to 5-3, while Squier scored a run in the fifth inning before tying the game in the sixth with his third hit of the afternoon. Then in the seventh after a Jeremy Eierman leadoff single, Vaughan lined a one-out triple to rightfield to put in front. Robert Mullen followed with a squeeze bunt to score Vaughan with an insurance run.

The come-from-behind victory marked Vermont’s first win after trailing by five or more runs in a game since turning the trick twice during the 2014 season after falling behind 5-0 (July 23rd at Lowell and July 30 vs. Batavia). The Lake Monsters have had at least one win every year since after trailing by four runs.

Vermont starter Adam Ruess, who had allowed just two runs on four hits over 10 2/3 innings in his first two starts this season vs. Connecticut, gave up four runs on four hits in the first inning on Sunday vs. the Tigers. Eric De La Rosa delivered a two-run single followed by RBI singles from Luke Sherley and Ulrich Bojarski. Connecticut added another run in the second on a Gresuan Silverio RBI double for the 5-0 lead.

Ruess settled down after the Silverio RBI double to retire the next eight Tigers and 11 of the next 12, giving the Lake Monsters the chance for the come-from-behind win. Ruess finished with a line of five runs allowed on six hits with three walks and four strikeouts in his five innings.

Cerny (1-0) came on in relief of Reuss to start the bottom of the sixth and retired all six batters he faced in two innings to earn his first professional win. Withers started the eighth by giving up back-to-back singles before needing just 14 pitches to strikeout the side, then after a leadoff walk in the ninth nailed down his second save with a line drive double play and pop out.

Vaughan went 2-for-4 with one run, double, triple and three RBI (8-for-23 last six games), while Squier 3-for-5 with two runs and an RBI (6-for-14 last three games after 0-for-25 slump). Jose Rivas and Jameson Hannah added two hits apiece for Vermont (15-14), which has won four of its last six games.

De La Rosa was 2-for-4 with a run and two RBI for Connecticut (14-15), while Arvicent Perez (0-1) three runs allowed on three hits and two walks in two innings of relief to take the loss.

The Lake Monsters and Tigers will wrap up the three-game series, and Vermont’s six-game roadtrip, Monday night in Connecticut at 7:05 pm. Lake Monsters return home to historic Centennial Field for a three-game series against the Staten Island Yankees starting on Tuesday.