Baseball: Ron Parliament’s Late-Game Heroics Give Brick Opening Day Victory
By Logan Stembel - Shore Sports Network contributor
BRICK - Senior Ron Parliament made sure Brick started off the baseball season on the right foot by ripping a game-tying RBI single that led to the winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning of a thrilling 3-2 victory over Lacey in Class A South on Wednesday.
Parliament was clutch as he lined a pitch into center field, scoring John Prato from second base to tie the game. On the same play, senior Carmen Sclafani scored on an overthrow to third base, giving Brick the opening day win.
“It was a make-it-or-break-it situation,'' Parliament said. "I was nervous but coach (Jason Groschel) calmed me down and told me to focus."
Sclafani, a Rutgers recruit, drove in the first run of the season on a single in the bottom of the third inning, scoring senior outfielder Brandon Weber for a 1-0 lead. Senior Steve Cole pitched a dominant 4 ⅓ scoreless innings, giving up only one hit and racking up four strikeouts. Sophomore Mike Soldo pitched 1 ⅔ innings in relief, and Weber got the win in his one inning of relief.
Lacey sophomore Anthony Elefante threw a very impressive five innings, giving up only one run on four hits. He also drove in Lacey’s two runs on a monster two-run home run to left field that gave the Lions (0-1, 0-1) a 2-1 lead in the top of the sixth inning before Brick rallied for the win.
“We were focused going into the game” Sclafani said. “There is a lot of room to improve, but it feels great to get that Opening Day win.”
Groschel preached in the preseason how they need to win close games and execute late in games, and the Green Dragons put that into action on Wednesday. Lacey suffered another tough loss after losing 11 one-run games last season.
Brick (1-0, 1-0) looks to take the momentum into Thursday's game against another Class A South foe, Southern.