Video highlights by Jon Perez and Halley Harris
By Matt Feldman
June 29, 2016
COTUIT – Down 2-1 to Chatham in the bottom of the fifth inning Wednesday, the Kettleers found themselves locked in a defensive duel, and neither side was giving up any slack.
Alonzo Jones Jr. (Vanderbilt) changed that.
With the bases loaded and no outs in the bottom of the fifth inning, Jones launched a triple into the right-center gap, clearing the bases for Cotuit and pushing the Kettleers ahead of the Anglers, 4-2.
“It’s a great feeling. I feel like I was due for one of those,” Jones said.
Jones’ three-RBI triple was part of a two-inning streak which saw Cotuit post seven of its eight runs Wednesday night. Behind a five-run fifth inning and a two-run home run in the bottom of the sixth from Jack Klein (Stanford), Cotuit (3-14) topped the Chatham Anglers (8-9), 8-2, Wednesday night at Lowell Park.
Cal Becker (Sonoma State) started on the mound for Cotuit. After a shaky first inning in which he walked the leadoff batter and allowed a hit to the next, Becker settled in from there out. The right hander allowed just one run on four hits in two and two-thirds innings pitched.
“Today is probably the first day we’ve combined hitting and pitching and reasonable defense, and a little bit of base running,” Cotuit head coach Mike Roberts said.
In the bottom of the third, with Greyson Jenista (Wichita State) on third and one out on the board, Chatham hurler Nick Meservey (Seattle) forced a pitch inside on Cal Stevenson (Arizona). The ball squirted past Anglers’ catcher Gunnar Troutwine (Wichita State). Jenista scored easily from third, and just like that, the game was tied at one-all.
“I’ve been known to put big hitters in the leadoff spot,” Roberts said. “(Jenista) is dangerous in the (leadoff) spot, and Stevenson really looks at the ball extremely well (at the plate).”
Jenista reached base four out of his five plate appearances Wednesday, tallying two hits and scoring three runs in the Kettleers’ victory.
After Chatham scored another in the fourth, Cotuit responded in the bottom of the fifth.
Down 2-1, Cotuit loaded the bases with no outs on the board. With the bags juiced, Jones smashed a bases-clearing triple into deep right-center field. The hit, Jones’ eighth of the season, put Cotuit on top 4-2.
“We had a lot of guys come through today,” Jones said. “Cal Stevenson had a really big at-bat before that; he got on base and gave me that opportunity (for the three-RBI triple).”
Jones scored on the next pitch, a wild-pitch that skipped past Troutwine. The run moved the score to 5-2 in favor of Cotuit.
In the bottom of the sixth inning, with Jenista on first and no outs on the board, Klein rocked a two-run home run to deep left field. Chatham left fielder Stuart Fairchild (Wake Forest) took two steps towards the ball, then watched as it sailed into the trees.
“I don’t try to guess pitches, so it was nothing special,” Klein said. “He gave me (a fastball) a little more middle, and I just got it, it was pretty good. A lot of the time I swing kind of defensively— I did my first two at bats— and then finally I let it go.”
The home run put the Kettleers on top, 8-2, where the score would remain for the rest of the game.
“We cut out the errors, we’re making good plays, the bats are still on the way up,” Klein said. “If we keep working, we’ll put it together a little more often, and hopefully we’ll do this a couple more times.”