Produced by Cierra Jordan
By: Matt McHugh
June 29, 2017
HYANNIS — The Cotuit Kettleers (8-7) had been starving for offense over the last few days, scoring just six runs in their last three games, but the offense was firing on all cylinders in an 11-6 road win over the Hyannis Harbor Hawks (6-8-1) on Thursday.
The Kettleers set the tone for the game in the first inning, stringing together five hits and a walk to bring in four runs off of Hyannis starter MD Johnson (Dallas Baptist). Catcher Gian Martellini (Boston College) capped off the rally with a two-run RBI single, his first RBI since June 23 at Brewster.
Cotuit extended their lead in the fourth inning, with three more hits and three more runs, making it a 7-1 ballgame. But in the bottom of the fifth, Hyannis started to rally and tighten up the game.
Starting pitcher Adam Scott (Wofford) had been cruising up until that point, but back-to-back singles to start the fifth, followed by a couple tough hops on the infield resulted in a four-run inning for the Harbor Hawks.
However, that Harbor Hawks rally was answered by a continued onslaught from the Cotuit offense. Martellini brought home two more runs with a two-out single, improving his RBI total to four on the evening.
“That was the biggest hit of the night,” coach Mike Roberts said. “They had just battled back and we had two outs. There were a lot of big hits, but that one got us back over the hump.”
Martellini’s big night at the plate boosted his batting average to .256 on the season, but offense still is not his main priority. “Managing the game and the pitching staff always comes first for me,” Martellini said. “I just have to stay focused at the plate too, and tonight I got a lot of good pitches to hit and I was able to really drive the ball.”
It was also a big night for outfielder Brett Kinneman (NC State), who went 3-4 and launched his first home run of the season over the right field fence to make it 11-5. Kinneman had been showing signs of improvement at the plate, and his plate discipline has been sharp. He walked two more times on Thursday, and improved his team-leading walks total to 12 on the season.
“I’ve always prided myself in having good plate discipline, and not swinging at bad pitches out of the zone,” Kinneman said. “Especially up here, with the quality pitching we’ve seen, you can’t really miss pitches that you have a chance to drive.”
The Kettleers were getting contributions from up and down the lineup, with every member of the starting lineup reaching base at least once. Griffin Conine (Duke) was the only player to go hitless, but his .356 batting average still leads the team.
“Everybody gets excited to hit with men on base,” Roberts said. “This field is conducive to offense because it’s really hard. If the ball’s not right at somebody, then it’s through. If you get the ball on the ground you have a chance for a base hit.”
On the mound, Chase Cohen (Georgia Southern), Justin Hooper (UCLA), David Inman (Coastal Carolina) and Chase Shugart (Texas) relieved Scott effectively, combining to go 4.2 innings while allowing just one run.
The Kettleers return home as they’ll host the Wareham Gatemen (6-9) for the first time this season, while the Harbor Hawks will make their first trip of the year to Brewster (8-6-1).