By Will Kraus, Bates College
Photos by Josh Muir, Endicott College
Video by Jacob Cohen, Boston University
Cotuit slammed the ‘Dores shut Monday night as the Kettleers took game one of the West Division Championship series by a score of 5-0, shutting out the Falmouth Commodores at Arnie Allen Diamond.
“Team effort, lots of people picked us up today.” Coach Roberts said following the win. “I’m just really pleased that they like to play, they enjoy playing with one another, they enjoy coming to the ballpark. I think they’re seeing some fruits of their labor in regards to the work they’ve put in this summer.”
Starter Trey Holland (South) in particular was tremendous, tossing six scoreless frames with five punchouts to earn the win.
“If you have to pinpoint one or two people tonight, you got to go to Trey Holland. That’s probably the best outing of his life. I’m so pleased for him. I mean he grew up 40 feet from my house. We were neighbors. I watched him grow up.” said Roberts of Holland’s outstanding effort.
“I was trying to fill up the zone most of the time.” Holland commented. “I was trying to be aggressive early so I was making sure I threw first pitch strikes and not throwing what they want to hit up there.”
As Holland left the game in the seventh he was met with a huge standing ovation from the entire Cotuit crowd up and down the third base line, who stood in unison with his teammates who came out of the dugout to congratulate Holland on his performance.
“I was trying to hold a smile in, but it came out.” Holland said, still smiling. “I was just relieved
to keep us in this game and put us in a good position to go to the next round.”
Roberts spoke further on the keys to Holland’s successful start.
“First, he throws strikes and if you throw strikes and you make them swing the bats then you always got a chance to win. He can do it with three or four different pitches and change speeds. You gotta change speeds and he just did a very nice job changing speeds and I thought Cody [Pasic (Maine) called an excellent game tonight.” Roberts finished.
The Kettleers gave Holland plenty of run support, grabbing the lead early off of Commodores starter Justin Wrobleski (Clemson), scoring three in the second.
Cotuit kicked the scoring off with a hard hit ball by Parker Chavers (Coastal Carolina) that the Falmouth shortstop muffed, allowing Casey Schmitt (San Diego State) to trot home for the 1-0 lead.
An Adam Oviedo (Oral Roberts) sacrifice fly to deep left field plated Coltyn Kessler (Kentucky) from third, followed by a passed ball that gave Donta Williams (Arizona) the chance to race home after swiping third, putting the Commodores in a 3-0 hole.
Oviedo batted in his second RBI in the third, smacking a single into left to score Oraj Anu (Kentucky) and extend the lead to four.
Come the sixth it was Cape League MVP, Nick Gonzales’ (New Mexico State) turn, as Gonzales batted Williams home from second with a ball he scorched up the middle giving Cotuit a 5-0 advantage.
“I thought Donta really had a couple of crucial plays that helped us.” praised Roberts. “He stole third and he was able to score and he did that on his own, I had nothing to do with that. Then he and Cody had a hit and run where he got to second base and then Nick drove him in with two outs.”
Reliever Bo Hofstra (Purdue) came up big as well in the seventh, immediately retiring the
runner he inherited on first with a 6-3 double play. Hofstra was excellent throughout his outing, earning the save after three shutout innings.
“I felt Bo was the right person tonight.” Roberts said. “ I thought he threw the ball extremely well, I thought he threw the ball down in the strike zone and he got that slider on a 2-2 pitch to get the double play. I’m really pleased for Bo. I think he’s been waiting all summer for Coach Roberts to say ‘go get ’em’ and tonight I asked him and he closed the door.”
Cotuit’s entire pitching staff gathered after the game with assistant coach Andrew Shreiner, jumping up and down while chanting “perfect staff” as the meeting came to a close.
“We were just getting a little hyped up from Shreiner’s postgame speech.” said Holland “He gets us motivated to go out there everyday and compete and that’s what we did tonight.”
With a win Tuesday the Kettleers will have the opportunity to compete for the Cape League crown.
Cotuit hosts game two of the West Division Series with a chance to move on to the Cape League Championship if victorious at Lowell Park versus Falmouth on Tuesday. First pitch is set for 4 PM.