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Granby slips past Eagles, 2-1

Brett Sullivan’s single to right field plated Noah Parent with the game-winning run in the bottom of the eighth inning and Granby High School edged Franklin County Technical School, 2-1, in a Tri-County League baseball game Tuesday in Granby.

The game was a pitchers’ duel with Granby’s Andy Gifford going pitch-for-pitch with Franklin Tech’s Ethan Wickline. The Eagles outhit the Rams, 6-3, but two of the Rams’ hits came in the bottom of the eighth to win the game.

Granby (2-2) got on the board first in the third inning without the benefit of a base hit. Andrew Strycharz walked to lead off, moved to second and third on passed balls and scored when Jake Whitacre grounded out. The Eagles (1-2) tied the game in the top of the fifth when Cooper Grace led off with a double and scored on Austin Burdick’s nubber in front of the plate that Granby catcher Travis Padgett overthrew to first base.

Granby nearly broke the tie in the sixth inning when Whitacre and Parent found themselves on second and third base with nobody out. Sullivan hit a ground ball to second and Tech second baseman Cody Booska gunned down Whitacre at the plate. Wickline came back to strike out Padgett and got a grounder to second to end the inning. Sullivan got another chance in the eighth and he made good on it.

R.J. Hubert finished with two hits in the win, while Jake Earl singled and stole a base. Wickline finished with four strikeouts and two walks in 7 1-3 innings. Gifford struck out eight and walked one in eight innings.

Gardner 4, Athol 2 — Josiah Leblanc’s two-run home run in the fifth inning proved to be the difference as Gardner High School doubled up Athol High School, 4-2, in an independent baseball game Tuesday in Athol.

Gardner led 4-0 following the Leblanc bomb and two solo shots by Anthony Guay before Athol (1-1) came back in the sixth with a pair of runs on Dakota Melanson’s two-run home run. Athol got the leadoff hitter on in the seventh when Jamie Posk singled, but Gardner reliever Matt Seward retired three straight to strand Posk at second and end the game.

Bradley Bousquet struck out five and allowed two solo home runs in four innings of work for Athol, while Joey Adams struck out three and walked one in two innings of relief.

Softball

Smith Voke 11, FC Tech 2 — Smith Vocational & Agricultural High School scored in the times in the third inning and went on to beat Franklin Tech, 11-2, in a Tri-County League softball game Tuesday in Northampton.

The Eagles were only down 1-0 in the third when pitcher Julia Carey was unable to return to the circle due to recurring back woes. Head coach Michael “Bubbles’ Blanchard said he expects the injury will likely keep Carey out for the rest of the season.

Smith Voke managed just four hits but took advantage of 13 walks to post the win.

Haylee Keene had two of the Eagles’ four hits. Alyssa Andrews and Brittany Andrews also singled.

Maddie Spencer-Orrell fanned 16 and walked six top earn the win.

Boys’ volleyball

Holyoke 3, Athol 0 — Holyoke High School cashed in on its front-row advantage to knock off Athol, 25-21, 25-9, 25-19 in an independent boys’ volleyball match Tuesday afternoon in Athol.

Lorenzo Carra finished with five assists for Athol, while Tyler Lajoie added 10 assists, two kills and three blocks. Matt Drazek added a block for the Red Raiders, Wyatt Doiron-LaRue registered six kills and served at 100 percent, and Jose Sierra finished with four digs.

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