LOWELL PARK — The Cotuit Kettleers relied on some timely power hitting and some explosive, “Make It Happen” baserunning to start the 2004 campaign off on the right foot yesterday afternoon, downing the visiting Columbus All-Americans, 6-2.
LSU first baseman Bryan Harris launched a two-run homer in the first inning to cap off a four-run burst and that was all the Kettleers would need to set the tone for Opening Day. Cotuit travels to Bourne to play the 2003 Western Division defending champion Braves on Thursday, June 17, at 4:45 p.m. The game will be played at the Coady School Field, followed by the Kettleers’ home opener at Lowell Park on Friday, June 18, at 5:00 p.m. versus cross-town rival Hyannis.
Ken Egeleton (The Citadel) started the game and allowed no earned runs, tossing one inning. He was followed by Adam Balkan (Princeton), Saunders Ramsey (Mississippi State), Ryan Cahalan (Florida Southern) and Geoff Strickland (Florida Southern).
Ramsey picked up the win, striking out four batters in two innings of work. Strickland gave up both runs but will be used primarily as an infielder this summer for the Kettleers.
Florida International’s Dennis Diaz (1-4, two stolen bases), Maryland’s Justin Maxwell (1-4), Strickland (1-2), Kris Karsarjian (1-1) and Brett Hayes (1-2) each collected base hits for the Kettleers. Maxwell scored after his basehit when he enticed ther Columbus pitcher, a lefthander, to try and pick him off. Maxwell bolted to second instead of heading back to first and the pitcher’s throw went wildly into centerfield, allowing Maxwell to score. The Kettleers tallied four stolen bases on the day.