Story By John S. Condakes
Saturday, July 19, 2008
ORLEANS — When you don’t hit, you don’t win. The old saying held true for Cotuit’s local nine on Saturday night in Orleans as they faced the hosting Cardinals and suffered a 6-0 loss. Brett Jackson (Cal Berkeley) returned after missing three games due to an ankle injury and was the lone bright spot in the lineup for the Kettleers as he went 2-4 with two singles out of the clean-up spot.
Zach Von Tersch of Georgia Tech got the start for the Kettleers and got himself into trouble in the bottom of the first inning as Orleans slugging third baseman Rich Poythress (Georgia) stroked a 2 RBI single to put the home team up 2-0 early. That would be all they would need but Von Tersch gave up two more runs in the bottom of the third thanks to an error after he loaded the bases with two outs. After three it was 4-0 Cardinals.
In the bottom of the fourth inning, Von Tersch walked the leadoff man in catcher Travis Tartamella (Pepperdine) and dropped a potential double play ball allowing left fielder Gary Brown (Cal State Fullerton) to reach with no outs. Wheeler walked and shortstop Cole Figueroa of Florida knocked in the fifth run for the Cardinals with an RBI single. All-Star right fielder Tim Wheeler of Sacramento State scored the sixth and final run on a wild pitch by Von Tersch for the 6-0 lead.
Newcomer John Lambert, who will be transferring from Community College to NC State in the fall, made his debut in relief of Von Tersch and worked out of a two-out bases-loaded jam to end the Orleans threat. “It was great, an amazing venue to get your first outing on the Cape,” said the lanky Lambert. “I was a little bit nervous, it’s one of those situations you try to prepare your whole life for and it helps when you’ve got some of the best players in the nation behind you,” he said. Lambert pitched well in his debut for the Kettleers pitching an inning and a third, with no hits, no runs, one walk and no strikeouts.
The real story of the game was the downright dominant performance of Kyle Smith from Kent State. With the exception of Jackson’s two singles, Smith scattered one other hit and a walk while striking out four as he cruised through the Cotuit lineup at breakneck speed. The game was completed in just over two hours. Only one Kettleer managed to reach third base and it wasn’t until the ninth inning when Kevin Patterson of Auburn hit a double and was moved over to third on a groundout by third baseman Jeff Kobernus of Cal Berkeley. Patterson’s double was given up by Orleans reliever Eliot Glynn of Connecticut.
Brandon Cumpton relieved Lambert and pitched a perfect eighth and ninth for Cotuit but the bats couldn’t supply any run support. The Kettleers dropped back to an even .500 at 15-15-1 while the Cardinals remained red-hot and secured their 20th win as they improved to 20-9-1 and pulled even farther away as the leaders in the Eastern Division.
Prior to the contest, the Cape Cod Baseball League All-Star team rosters were released. The Kettleers are proud to send three of their own to the game in Chatham on July 26th. Patterson will be the starting designated hitter for the West and Seth Blair (Arizona State) may pitch in the eighth inning according to Coach Roberts. Nick Hernandez (Tennessee) was named as an alternate to the squad and could see some time out of the bullpen if needed.