EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Sports

June 23, 2013

Whittier baseball 2013: Five steps to build a champion

1. Totally selfless — For three seasons, Nathan Frongillo played second base and was one of the best in Eastern Mass. But this team needed a stabilizing force in the outfield. Frongillo stepped up and sacrificed, playing a brilliant center field defensively while hitting .356, scoring 25 runs and driving in 17.

2. The horse — Greats like Tim Stronach and Dillon Ryan set the bar high for the No. 1 spot in the rotation. Andrew Wells took it to another level. Wells went an amazing 88 innings, going 11-1 with one save on the year. He struck out 112 and walked just 12, posting a 1.27 ERA.

3. Out of nowhere — Teams don’t succeed in the postseason without a superb No. 2 pitcher. In the preseason, Whittier coach Joe Boland thought that might be a liability. Enter senior right-hander Devan Doucette, who went from bullpen afterthought to prime-time all-conference standout in just one year. Doucette finished the year at 7-3 with 41 strikeouts and a 2.41 ERA in 58 innings.

4. The backbone — Anthony Licciardello proved plenty behind the plate and at the plate in an all-conference 2012 junior season. But this spring, the senior was off the charts. Licciardello dominated with a .442 batting average, 25 RBIs and 20 runs. Nine of the RBIs came in the five state tourney games. He made it back-to-back on the all-conference team.

5. Fitting in the final pieces — Boland needed a No. 2 hitter, and the Wildcats found one in Alex LoGiudice, a speedy, intelligent, team-first guy. … Junior Jaylin Deveau, a superb athlete in football and hoops, made it three for three. He hit .307 with 18 runs and 13 RBIs. … And sophomores Ralph Francesconi and Jorge Martinez proved they could be top run producers in the present and the future. Martinez hit .288 with 18 RBIs, while Francesconi drove in 21 with a .259 average.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports

Local Sports Videos
Sports Videos
How Will Wiggins Deal Impact Potential Love Trade? Tony Dungy Weighs in on Michael Sam Dareus fails conditioning test, Watkins lifts spirits Clay Travis On Mettenberger Punch & "Dumbest Fanbase" - @TheBuzzeronFOX Bowlsby talks cheating in NCAA Kluwe: How can Tony Dungy advocate felons, not Michael Sam SNC Minute: Phils lose; Lee set to return Eagles less than a week away from training camp Could Cliff Lee's health affect trade value? McCarthy and Stairs break down the Phillies' loss 105-year-old woman throws first pitch McIlroy wins British Open, Tiger finishes 69th Astros, Aiken fail to reach deal Could Rousey beat Mayweather? Can the Panthers replace Steve Smith? Will Bengals sign Dalton to long-term deal? Offseason Report: Biggest Question Marks in the AFC West Ole Miss facing increased expectations Derek Jeter Respect Ad Delivers Larry’s Notebook: Is Jimmie Johnson Behind the Curve?
Boston Sports
How Will Wiggins Deal Impact Potential Love Trade? Tony Dungy Weighs in on Michael Sam Dareus fails conditioning test, Watkins lifts spirits Clay Travis On Mettenberger Punch & "Dumbest Fanbase" - @TheBuzzeronFOX Bowlsby talks cheating in NCAA Kluwe: How can Tony Dungy advocate felons, not Michael Sam Curran: Did the Patriots make a mistake by drafting Garoppolo? McAdam: Yankees pitching troubles bad news for Sox negotiations with Lester Curran: Will Pats struggle to find an identity on offense this season? Perry: Lester impressive again in Sox 6-0 win over the Royals 105-year-old woman throws first pitch McIlroy wins British Open, Tiger finishes 69th Astros, Aiken fail to reach deal Could Rousey beat Mayweather? Can the Panthers replace Steve Smith? Will Bengals sign Dalton to long-term deal? Offseason Report: Biggest Question Marks in the AFC West Ole Miss facing increased expectations Players to watch when training camp opens Bruins 1st round pick David Pastrnak signs entry level contract