ANDOVER -- North Andover’s Little League team entered the District 14 championship series against Andover confident of victory and Tuesday night it showed why.
After winning a 2-1 pitching duel Monday, North Andover used its bats Tuesday to prevail with a 9-4 victory to sweep the series and advance to next week’s sectional tournament in Beverly.
“We liked our chances because this is pretty much the same team that won the district as 10-year-olds two years ago,” said North Andover coach Brendan Salach.
One player not on that district team two years ago was Dunny Murphy and he got North Andover going Tuesday.
After Andover took a 1-0 lead in the top of the second, Murphy tied it with a solo home run in the bottom of the inning and North Andover never trailed again.
North Andover scored another run in the second and added two more in the third and five in the fourth to take a 9-1 lead. Andover scored three more runs in the top of the sixth.
Trey Martin, who got the save on Monday, started and went 5 2/3 innings for the win, allowing seven hits and three earned runs while striking out seven. Murphy came in to get the final out.
Ben Sullivan-Lattuga, who pitched 4 2/3 shutout innings Monday, led the offense for North Andover with two hits, two RBIs and two runs scored. Brendan Sullivan had two RBIs on a single and sacrifice fly and catcher Brayden Salach excelled defensively.
For Andover, Joey Russo was 2 for 3 with a run scored after hitting a home run on Monday and Jamie Norton had two doubles, two RBIs and scored twice.
North Andover will enter pool play next Wednesday through Friday at the sectional in Beverly with the top two teams playing in the finals on Saturday.
NIGHT OWLS WIN AGAIN
HAVERHILL -- Winning his third game of the summer Tyler McDonald, pitched five innings, striking out five while allowing just one run as the Kingston Night Owls defeated the Manchester Marlins for their third straight win.
Offensively, the Night Owls were led by Brett Blackwell’s 2 hits, 2 runs, and 1 RBI while Nick Comei contributed with his second home run of the season.
Andrew Thibault made two excellent catches in center field in helping secure the win. The Night Owls’ record is 9-5 with their next game Thursday against the Manchester Marlins at Haverhill Stadium at 6 p.m.