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Ljucovic Six-Hitter Leads Pelham to 4-1 Win

PELHAM, N.Y. -- Pelham opened the 2012 varsity baseball season with a pair of wins, which had the Pelicans looking to add to the victory total.

However, consecutive losses left Pelham angry and with a bad taste in its mouth. The Pelicans took the field against visiting Dobbs Ferry planning to return to their winning ways. Junior right-hander Gjon Ljucovic made sure of this.

Ljucovic, who threw a no-hitter in his first varsity start, followed it up with a six-hitter and 10 strikeouts in a 4-1 win at Glover Field on Tuesday.

Even with his no-hitter, the poised junior entered the game with a new mindset and did not allow himself to get overconfident.

“I came in with a clean slate and felt like I was making my first varsity start again,” Ljucovic said.

David Wright had two hits, drove in two runs and scored twice and designated hitter Joe Bitetto went 2 for 2 with a pair of RBI.

“Our motto this year is ‘Binghamton or bust,’” said Ljucovic, in reference to the site of the New York State Class A baseball championship. “We got off to a 2-0 start and our hopes were up. Then after those two losses we were angry with ourselves. I wanted to come in today, throw strikes and get us a win.”

Ljucovic faced trouble in the second inning as Thomas Fleming and Matt Bohl singled to lead off. Both runners advanced on a come backer. Ljucovic bore down and struck out Mike Mitaro and Rocco Cipriano.

“I didn’t want to walk either of them to load the bases,” Ljucovic said. “When you have to pitch with runners in scoring position you have to focus more and get into a zone.”

Pelham scored three runs in the bottom of the third against the hard-throwing Fleming. Anthony Senerchia initiated it with a lead-off double. Following an out, John Manning walked and both runners advanced on a wild pitch. Wright stepped in and stroked a single to center, scoring Senerchia and Manning. Wright scored the third run on a Bitteto double.

Dobbs Ferry scored in the fourth inning as Fleming opened with a double and came home on a Mitaro single up the middle. Fleming, who went five and one-third innings, finished with two hits.

Dobbs Ferry 000 100 0 -- 1-6-0 Pelham 003 010 x -- 4-6-0

RBI: DF: Mike Mitaro; Pl: David Wright 2, Joe Bitteto 2. 2B -- DF: Eddie Ritch; Pl: Joe Bitteto, Anthony Senerchia. WP -- Gjon Ljucovic. LP -- Thomas Fleming.

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