Frontier, Athol to clash today

  • Frontier pitcher Matt Hildreth (9) throws in 2018. Hildreth will get the ball in an early road test for the Red Hawks against Athol on Monday. FILE PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol pitcher Mark Ferrari (32) throws against Mohawk in 2018. Ferrari will start against Frontier, Monday in Athol.  FILE PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

Staff Writer
Published: 4/21/2019 10:04:48 PM

Even with the high school baseball season just getting underway due to the weather in New England, there will be a baseball game with a playoff-type atmosphere in Athol on Monday afternoon when Athol High School hosts Frontier Regional School at 4.

The Athol baseball team is undefeated through five games.  It’s one of the best starts in the history of the program.

Frontier has demolished its first three opponents of the season, but due to an illegal player in one game, the team had to forfeit a win and sits at 2-1. 

“I think for us, Frontier, is the team everyone wants to be,” Athol coach Josh Talbot said. “You read the papers at the start and it’s ‘Who is going to spoil the Frontier party?’ We just want to make some noise against a good team and see where we are at. It’s a great test for us.”

The Red Hawks have come out of Franklin County twice in the last three seasons to make it to the Western Mass. finals under coach Chris Williams. “It is a great opportunity for us to compete against a good team that is playing good baseball,”  Frontier coach Chris Williams said. “They have potentially elite pitching.  We need to play a complete game of baseball.” 

The Red Raiders, who are looking like the favorites in the Hampshire League East will start the hard-throwing Mark Ferrari with Nick Bousquet and senior Anthony Oro available in relief. 

“Mark is our guy,” Talbot said. “He had a dominant season last year and has looked good this year. It’s a big opportunity for him. A coming out party. I don’t think he gets enough respect.”

The Red Hawks are considered the favorite to win the Hampshire West and return to the WMass finals. Last season, Frontier lost to Taconic, 6-1, in the Division 3 championship game. 

Frontier had an optional practice on Easter Sunday, noting the importance of the game on Monday.  

“We are getting a quick hitting session in,” Williams said. “We do have a big matchup tomorrow. Most of the starters will be here.”

Matt Hildreth will be on the mound for the Red Hawks. Frontier (2-1) has not given up a run this season and has outscored its opponents 36-0.

Dylan Apanell can pitch for the Red Hawks if needed in the later innings.  

The one loss came when an academically ineligible player played against Pioneer Valley Regional.

“That was on me,” Williams said. 

The Red Raiders keep finding ways to win this season with production coming from all over the line-up.  

Leadoff hitter and shortstop Dilan Fountain is getting on base consistently, while Keegan Lutz is off to a hot start at the plate as well for Athol. 

Noah Pottinger broke out of a slump with two hits and two RBIs against Hopkins Academy.

“There is a lot of baseball to be played,” Talbot said. “We will know after this game where we need to get better.” 

The Red Raiders lost to the Red Hawks last season, 12-2.




Greenfield Recorder

14 Hope Street
Greenfield, MA 01302-1367
Phone: (413) 772-0261
Fax: (413) 772-2906

 

Copyright © 2019 by Newspapers of Massachusetts, Inc.
Terms & Conditions - Privacy Policy