Christian Staehely Turns in Solid Performance; Cisco Provides Relief
By Megan Kerr/Asst. Web Editor
July 27, 2006
CHATHAM, MA — Balls were flying out of Veterans Field at a remarkable rate as Cotuit beat the Chatham A’s five to one with a healthy display of power. Kellen Kulbacki (James Madison, 1 for 4, 1 RBI) began the barrage of homeruns in the second inning as he hit a solo shot against A’s starter Rich Sirois (Connecticut, 1BB, 8K, 9H) over the short right field fence, which at the very corner only goes out 314 feet, to give the Kettleers a one run lead. After struggling early, Kulbacki has found his homerun stroke as he now has five on the season, which is good enough to tie him with several players at fourth place in the league. Justin Smoak (South Carolina, 2 for 5, 2 RBI) decided to join in the fun in the third inning as he blasted a one and one pitch over the left field score board for his seventh homerun of the season and to give the Kettleers a three run lead.
With the homerun display that the Kettlers were putting on, it was easy to forget what was happening on the defensive side of the ball, which is unfortunate as Christian Staehely (Princeton, 3BB, 5K, 1H) pitched beautifully for the Kettleers. Staehely, who now leads the team with five victories, threw a one hit hitter through six innings as he kept the Chatham attack completely off balance. Entering the seventh inning, Staehely wasn’t as sharp as he had already thrown ninety-one pitches, which the Chatham A’s were able to take advantage of. After the first batter reached base on an error by shortstop Reese Havens (South Carolina, 2 for 4), Nick Derba (Manhattan, 1 for 4, 1 RBI) doubled to bring the runner in and give Chatham their first run of the game. With Staehely obviously tiring, reliever Michael Cisco (South Carolina, 0BB, 1K, 1 H) came on and stranded his two inherited base runners to maintain the fact that no earned runs had crossed the plate.
Cotuit entered the top of the ninth inning with a comfortable lead of three runs, which they added to with their third homerun of the game. The short right field fence turned out to be an advantage for the Kettleers as with one out, Tony Thomas (Florida St, 2 for 4, 1 RBI) hit a long line drive that carried out of Veterans Field for his first homerun of the season. Chatham wasn’t going to be able to come back with Cotuit leading by four runs and the A’s went down easily in the bottom of the ninth with Cory Gearrin (Young Harris, 0BB, 4K, 0H) striking out all three batters to secure the victory for the Kettleers. Cotuit now stands at 24-10-1 on the season, which is good enough for the leagues best record. The Kettleers now travel to play Falmouth in an important double-header for the Commodores as they are fighting for their playoff lives.