By John S. Condakes
JUNE 14, 2008
COTUIT — The Kettleers earned a 4-1 victory in their season opener against the Brewster Whitecaps behind 8 strikeouts from starting pitcher Nick Hernandez of Tennessee.
The Kettleers and Whitecaps exchanged scoreless first innings but Cotuit struck first in the bottom of the second on singles by Robbie Shields (Florida Southern), Robert Stock (USC) and an RBI single by Mike Bianucci (Auburn). The Whitecaps struck right back with an RBI single by Clemson’s Mike Freeman to tie the score at one after three innings. The score remained the same until the fifth inning when Bianucci scored the first run on an infield hit by Florida International’s Ryan Mollica. Auburn’s Kevin Patterson scored on an RBI fielder’s choice by Jeff Schaus (Clemson) to make it 3-1 Cotuit at the end of the fifth. Patterson cracked a double in the bottom of the seventh finished the night 2 for 3 with a run scored after he was pulled for pinch runner Dallas Poulk of NC State. Poulk was plated when shortstop Robbie Shields (Florida Southern) walked with the bases loaded to put the Kettleers up 4-1.
Danny Meszaros from the College of Charleston came on in relief of Hernandez and was lights-out through an inning and two-thirds until he surrendered back-to-back singles with two outs. He ended the game on a called third strike to Freeman. Mezsaros’s five strikeouts were all called third strikes respectively and he earned his first save of the year. The Kettleers continued their aggressiveness on the basepaths as they converted two hit-and-runs and right fielder Evan Crawford of Indiana stole his first base of the season. The Kettleers will return to action tomorrow night at Orleans at 7 p.m. for their first away game of the young season.