By Zach Kaplan
Penn State University
June 14, 2018
WAREHAM– For the first few innings, it seemed like Cotuit’s Zane Collins (Wright State) and Wareham’s Mason Feole (UConn) could pitch all night as they mowed through either team’s batting order.
But each team’s bullpen yielded runs, with the Gatemen grinding out a 4-2 win in the Kettleers first road game of the season, dropping Cotuit to 1-1 on the season.
Colby White (Mississippi State) took the loss for the Kettleers, while Connor Lunn (Southern Cal) got the win and Tyler Keysor (Miami) had the save for Wareham.
A two-run eighth inning proved to be the difference when the Gatemen added two insurance runs as Parker Phillips (Austin Peay) drove in two runs with a two-RBI single, making it 4-2 for the Gatemen.
“You stay in games in the first six innings, you win games in the seventh, eighth and ninth, and tonight, we didn’t play very well in the last few innings. I don’t like giving away potential wins,” said manager Mike Roberts after the game.
Wareham had a great chance to extend the lead with the bases loaded and only one out, but Stephen Shoch (UMBC) struck out two to end the inning.
Baserunners were hard to come by for either side early on. Collins allowed only two in the first four innings, striking out four on the day while allowing only two hits.
When asked what worked well tonight, he kept it simple: “Changing speeds worked a lot,” said Collins. He also lauded his catcher [Zach Humphreys] and pitching coach [Jerry Weinstein]: “They’re great dudes. They know the game of baseball and pitching really well.”
Things nearly came unraveled in the fifth inning for Collins, with two runners on and two outs, but Eric Jones (Davidson) made a fantastic diving stop at third to end the threat.
Jones fed off right off his big play in the field by driving in the first run of the game, an RBI single that drove in Cory Wood (Coastal Carolina).
White relieved Collins in the sixth inning, as Michael Amditis (Miami) hit an RBI single to drive in Andrew Vaughn (California), tying the game for Wareham. Bryson Stott (UNLV) would come around to score on the ensuing at-bat on a wild pitch.
Joe Boyle (Notre Dame) came on and struck out the side for the Kettleers in the seventh inning, but the Cotuit bats were silenced again in the top half of the frame. Stymied by the Wareham pitching, Cotuit mustered only five hits on the day.
With that said, the Kettleers went down fighting in the ninth inning. Trying to muster a two-out rally, Tom Dillard (Ole Miss) walked and later came around to score on an RBI single from Zach Biermann (Coastal Carolina) to draw within two.
With Biermann and Will Robertson (Creighton) on base representing the tying runs, Zach Humphreys (TCU) popped out to third to end the game.
The Kettleers will get back at it on Friday, when they host the Hyannis Harbor Hawks at 5:00 p.m. at Lowell Park.