Local Rhode Island Baseball Talent Propel Rhode Island College To Wins vs Castleton

During the work week, I am always looking to the weekend to catch a baseball game. My Google Baseball calendar had Saturday April 9th filled a mile long with scheduled baseball games. Injury Fund games for Rhode Island High Schools, local AAU teams competing here and around the New England region, and a bunch of collegiate baseball home games, with some of those being doubleheaders just to name a few. However, as the weekend began, so did the rain and thus a lot of games on my calendar were postponed or cancelled due to the rainy conditions. After all, it is April! So I checked around social media and baseball pages and saw that Rhode Island College, whom I haven’t seen a game yet this season, was still scheduled for 12pm and decided to take the familiar trip up to RIC and Pontarelli Field.

The past few years, I have visited RIC and Pontarelli Field for non-RIC baseball games. The last being the 2021 Rhode Island D1 State Baseball Championship Series Game 2, featuring North Kingstown vs Coventry High School. That day was both an experience and a “nightmare” as Coventry’s Tommy Turner (recently interview on ABC6 News, click here to watch) mowed down my NKHS Skippers one by one by one for a gigantically impressive Game 2 victory. As I walked up the slope to the bleacher area, I was remembering the game vividly and seeing all the Coventry and North Kingstown baseball families I had coached with and against for years. That was a really cool memory for me!!!

Ok, back to why I was there yesterday. Rhode Island College Baseball, coached by Frank Holbrook, was off to an impressive 12-6-1 start to the season prior to yesterday’s doubleheader vs Castleton University. Coach Holbrook and I run into each other quite a bit during the off season at scout days and in the summer for collegiate baseball league games. Coach Holbrook will be the head coach of the Newport Gulls this summer, so I am sure to run into him even more than normal as I go to a ton of Gulls games in the summer. For those of you who don’t know him, Coach Holbrook is a great baseball resource here in Rhode Island, very approachable, very easy to chat baseball with. And judging by the RIC Baseball roster, he takes a lot of local baseball talent into consideration when he is compiling his rosters every year. Something to keep in mind if you are a local RI High School baseball player looking to land in a quality collegiate program!

The weather was iffy and very windy to say the least as I drove up from North Kingstown, took 295 West to Route 6 then Killingly St, through Johnston, into North Providence, through Fruit Hill, then right into the campus of Rhode Island College. There were college tours going on all around the campus (which I will highlight later) and there was a lot of activity around the parking lot leading up to Pontarelli Field. Rachel and I arrived just as the starting lineups were being announced and found a spot in the bleachers just to the left of the visitor’s dugout. The national anthem was played as the wind tried its very best to rip the American Flag off its mast in centerfield. And then it was game time. First pitch was just after 12:10pm.

As you may know from reading my blogs after attending college or summer league games, I am always particularly keen on Rhode Island talent on the field. This will be a common theme in this blog about the Rhode Island College baseball team on the field yesterday. A ton of home grown talent from all over the State of Rhode Island baseball were on display and each one made a huge contribution. And I love to share that news with my wife, Rachel who attends these games with me. I will say something like “this kid on the mound is from West Warwick,” to which she will reply “oh cool” or “oh nice.” Saturday’s game had a lot of “hey this kid is from…” chatter from me to Rachel and here are the photos to back that up:

Andrew Sears, West Warwick – started the game and ripped through the batting order with consistent strikes and outs. Sears finished with 5IP, 1R, 9Ks, and that all important W.

Cam Santerre, Mt. Hope, had 3 BBs, 1 RBI, and stole 2 bases. Santerre was the leadoff batter and started in Center Field.

Cal Parrillo, Ponaganset, hit the baseball with authority all game. His first at bat, he smoked a single to left center on a line drive. Final stats – 3 for 5, 2 RBIs, 2 Runs Scored. Parrillo started at 2nd base.

Jarrad Grossguth, Coventry, had quality at bats all game, finishing with a stat line of: 1-3, 2BBs, 2 RBIs, and 2 Runs Scored. Grossguth started at 3rd base.

Joey Coro, North Providence, seriously hit a baseball out of the city of North Providence in his first at bat. It landed somewhere in MA, I believe. Coro finished the day going 2 for 3, 4RBI, 4 runs scored. Coro started in Left Field.

Lucas Pierce, Ponaganset, played a solid game at the plate and behind the plate. Pierce threw out a running attempting to steal third. And at the plate – 1 for 3, 3RBI, 1 Run scored. Pierce was the starting Catcher.

Sean Helfrich, LaSalle Academy, ripped a grand slam over the left center field fence in the bottom of the 1st. His final stats line – 2 for 3, 5RBIs, 2 runs scored. That grand slam was awesome! Helfrich started in Right Field.

Alex Martinez, Cranston East, finished with a hit in 3 at bats, 1 run scored, and was the Designated Hitter for Game 1.

Izaiah Rivera, Tolman, hit the ball hard all day long. Rivera finished with a stat line: 2-4, 1RBI, 1 run scored. Rivera started at Shortstop.

Of the 10 possible spots in Coach Holbrook’s lineup card for Saturday’s Game 1 vs. Castleton, 9 spots were filled by local Rhode Island talent. Sears, Santerre, Parrillo, Grossguth, Coro, Pierce, Martinez, Rivera, Helfrich – each and every one of them contributed big time in a very impressive Game 1 win. Base hits, home runs, RBIs, defensively, on the mound, a total team win. Final score: RIC Baseball 18 – Castleton 1.

Despite the iffy weather and the blustery wind, the action on the field was fantastic. Sears pitched a great game, he was in control recorded his 5th win of the year. Home runs by Coro and Helfrich were awesome. It was great to see Santerre and Parrillo in game actions, having interviewed them earlier this year for my blog. And just the whole Rhode Island baseball theme was really on display at Pontarelli Field on Saturday. Rhode Island High Schools represented on the field include West Warwick, Ponaganset, LaSalle Academy, Cranston West, Mt. Hope, North Providence, Coventry, and Tolman. It was great to chat with Coach Holbrook in between innings on Saturday and I was psyched for him and the entire RIC baseball team. It was an awesome Rhode Island Baseball Experience watching a ton of Rhode Island baseball talent on display in an impressive Rhode Island College baseball win!

For more information on Rhode Island College baseball, head over to their baseball page – RIC Baseball.

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The RIBBE is The Rhode Island Baseball Experience. It is promoting the game of baseball here in the great state of Rhode Island for the entire baseball world to see. The RIBBE is positive stories, photos, videos, and responsible social media posts. The RIBBE is an information resource for families looking for an AAU team or a summer camp or a great place to buy a first baseman’s mitt. The RIBBE is a network of coaches, tournament directors, parents, leagues, and baseball junkies whose passion of the game of baseball is unquestioned. I believe that providing expert analysis, information and directions to ballfields, and coaching advice from some of the top RI baseball minds will help promote the game of baseball here in RI to a whole new level.

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