By Greg Phipps
After getting tripped up with two straight defeats, the Peabody Tanners got back on the winning track with an impressive 7-0 shutout of the Marblehead Magicians Monday afternoon at Seaside Park in Marblehead. It was the fourth shutout victory of the season for the Tanners, who have gotten solid pitching this spring. Eddie Campbell, who was coming off a win over Lynn English in his previous start, went the distance Monday, giving up just three hits and striking out six. The only blemish was the six walks he allowed.
Peabody head coach Mark Bettencourt was obviously pleased to see his team, which improved to 8-3, end a two-game losing streak. The Tanners suffered consecutive defeats to Salem and Medford last week after having won six straight. “We stumbled the last couple of games, so it’s nice to bounce back,” said Bettencourt after Monday’s game. “Eddie was a big part of that today. He kept pumping strikes and he kept them off balance. Our defense also played strong behind him.” Campbell ended Monday’s game in grand style by fanning the side in the seventh inning.
While the Marblehead offense was being kept at bay, Peabody’s attack came to life in the top of the fourth frame. With the Tanners up 1-0, Jake Gustin, who finished with three hits and an RBI, led off the fourth with a single and eventually came around to score on Eric DeMayo’s double.
Two more runs eventually came across when freshman Ryan Knight, called up from the junior varsity team, slugged a long triple to centerfield to make it 4-0. Knight had two hits on the day. The Tanners would tally three more times over the remainder of the contest to account for the final margin.
“Ryan had that big hit and Jake had a great day at the plate. Up and down the lineup, I thought we had better at bats than we had the last two games,” said Bettencourt. “And we ran the bases a lot better, which is a good sign.”
Having now passed the halfway mark of the season, Bettencourt said his team is looking to treat the remaining contests as a new season. “We kind of like to put the season into chapters. The first half we were 7-3, but we’ll erase that record for the second half. We’re starting over,” he explained. “We’re looking forward to the next [nine] games and see where we stand. We’ll keep working to get better.”