OLD ORCHARD BEACH — For most of Tuesday’s game at The Ballpark, a pair of one-loss Class A South baseball teams were in a giving mood. Errors, wild pitches and passed balls led to most of the runs.

But with the game tied 8-8 in the bottom of the sixth, No. 9 hitter Ryan Penney drilled a fastball from Cheverus reliever Jack Mullen to left-center for a go-ahead RBI double, lifting Thornton Academy to a 9-8 victory.

“I always sit fastball and he just happened to leave a fastball over the middle and I took advantage of it,” said Penney, a junior left fielder. “We have great perseverance. Everybody played their part, through the ups and downs. It was rainy, it was wet, but everybody did their part.”

Thornton improved to 6-1, while Cheverus dipped to 5-2.

Seven of Cheverus’ runs were unearned, including all four in the top of the sixth when they took an 8-6 lead. Nate Rogers reached on Tim Smith’s third throwing error and scored on a wild pitch by starting pitcher Luke Chessie. Cheverus senior first baseman John Welch put the Stags ahead with a two-out, three-run homer, a majestic drive that carried over the fence in right.

“It was exciting in the moment,” Welch said. “It felt good to see it go out in the big park, with the real wall out there.”

Cam Seymour started Thornton’s sixth-inning rally with a walk. Smith followed with his second double of the game. Seymour scored on a wild pitch and Smith tied the game on a passed ball. After Toby Pydych walked, Mullen came on for Cheverus and got a popup before Cam Cross (2 for 2) singled up the middle to set up Penney’s at-bat.

“When they hit that three-run home run, we still had two more at-bats. The conditions weren’t very good and we were putting the ball in play, which, for us, was big. We got a couple of big hits,” said Thornton Coach Jason Lariviere.

The game started in a light mist that turned into a steady rain by the fifth inning. Pitchers from both teams struggled as balls got wet and the mound got slippery. The game was twice halted to spread drying material on the mound and around home plate.

Seymour, Thornton’s catcher, knew what to expect when he was called on to pitch the seventh.

“I tried to shorten up my stride a little bit, kind of stay tall so I didn’t have to worry about sliding out from under me, and I had to throw pretty much just fastballs because I didn’t know if I could throw a curveball with that ground,” Seymour said.

Seymour walked two but struck out the side.

“It tells us we’re a gritty team. We always go by the motto, ‘Gritty not pretty,’ and that’s how we play. We may not always be the cleanest team, but we always try to grit it out and battle as hard as we can,” Seymour said.

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.