By Will Kraus, Bates College
Photos by Josh Muir, Endicott College
July 15, 2019
You could have blinked and Cotuit was already up 2-0 in the top of the first inning on Monday at Bourne.
Nick Gonzales (New Mexico State) took Bourne starter Mac Lardner (Gonzaga) 368 feet deep to left field to start off the ballgame on a high-arching bomb that immediately put the Kettleers in front of the Braves.
It was Gonzales’ third lead-off homer of the year. At the time it gave Gonzales the team lead in home runs with five.
Casey Schmitt (San Diego State) changed that the very next at bat with a 373 foot shot to left for his fifth home run of the season.
It looked like it might be Cotuit’s night as they jumped all over Orleans’ ace early. Lardner had just a 0.82 ERA coming into the game.
Christopher Holcomb (Tulane) made his first start for Cotuit and put up a 0 in his first frame
as he impressively struck out batters on both a curveball and a heater.
Brereton’s Strong Outing
Richard Brereton (Emory) would have to relieve Holcomb of the mound in the second inning as Bourne had already tied the game at two and had the bases juiced with just one out.
Brereton got out of the jam immediately with a 1-2 groundout and a fly out that kept the game knotted at 2.
Brereton was simply fabulous in four innings of work, striking out four, allowing 0 runs, and keeping the Kettleers in the game.
Moore Continues All-Star Level Play
Matt Moore (Purdue) continued his dominance on the mound in his inning and a third.
Moore struck out two and allowed just one hit while dropping his ERA to a miniscule 0.79 compared to an already stellar 0.90 prior to today’s performance.
Moore has been a go-to option out of the bullpen, having not allowed a run since June.
In four appearances in the month of July Moore has tossed six scoreless innings of relief for Cotuit.
It’s a challenge to win when you leave men on base and don’t hit runners in scoring position home.
That was the case in this one for Cotuit as the team combined to go 0-6 with RISP and stranded eight men.
Cotuit had a prime opportunity to grab the lead in the eighth as Schmitt’s grounder to second allowed Gonzales to advance to third with just one out.
All the Kettleers needed was a hit, a fly ball deep enough in the outfield to give Gonzales the chance to score, or even a good break on a passed ball. But none of those three things happened and Bourne took advantage with a solo home run by Jud Fabian (Florida) in the bottom half of the inning.
Just like that Cotuit found themselves three outs away from defeat.
They had another solid chance to score in the ninth as Cam Hill (Kentucky) stole second with two out and Adam Oviedo (Oral Roberts) up.
Oviedo has proven he can be clutch since the very first game of the season when he had the go ahead RBIs in the bottom of the seventh that pushed Cotuit to a season opening 4-3 victory over the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox.
Oviedo sent a rocket to the right side, but unfortunately it was hit right to second baseman Cody Morissette (Boston College) who tossed it to first to seal the win for Bourne.
On Tuesday Cotuit (15-12-3) heads to Eldredge Park to face the Orleans Firebirds (14-11-3) at 7 PM.