Cotuit, MA- “All I can say is the Ketts are Hot,” said Eric Brown Jr. (Coastal Carolina) after the Cotuit Kettleers’ fifth straight win. The hottest team on the Cape resides in Cotuit. The Kettleers completed a home-and-home sweep of the Falmouth Commodores with a 12-9 win on Sunday night. The Kettleers plated 28 runs over the two-game series. The Kettleers have scored double-digit runs in three straight games and in four of the last five games. After tonight’s win, the Kettleers are one win away from clinching a playoff spot.
Moments that mattered:
Cotuit plates seven in the third
The Kettleers’ offense refuses to take their foot off the gas pedal. Cotuit scored seven runs on six hits in the third inning. Jace Grady (Dallas Baptist) got the party started with a hustle double, as he just beat a throw to second after grounding the ball through the middle of the infield. Ryan Ritter (Kentucky) singled up the middle to plate Grady and extend his hitting streak to nine. After a walk, Noah Bridges (UNC Wilmington) kept his hot ways going at the plate with another clutch extra base hit. ‘Big-hit Bridges’ smoked a line drive the other way for a two-run double.
“I think the whole teams gotten big hits recently. Bridges’ bases loaded hit certainly helped us get moving tonight. I’m just really pleased with our overall lineup right now,” Roberts said.
Brett Roberts (Florida State) followed with a multi-RBI knock of his own. The designated hitter ripped a two-run single up the middle to extend Cotuit’s lead to six. Matt Suggs (UNC Wilmington) capped the inning with a two-run shot over the left field fence. It was Suggs’ first blast of the summer.
Suggs said, “I was just looking for something down the middle and just trying to stick to my swing and drive the ball somewhere to get some runs for us. It felt great. Definitely felt some strong contact and I’m hoping to keep it rolling.”
Commodores plate five over two innings, Cotuit homers keep the distance
The Commodores got on the board in the fourth inning. Michael Curriale slugged a two-run homer off the scoreboard to cut the lead to six. The Kettleers and Eric Brown Jr. (Coastal Carolina) had an immediate response. Brown crushed a two-run homer of his own over the left center fence. The blast was a no-doubter and Brown’s fifth of the summer, tied for a team high. The home run was Brown’s second in as many days.
“I was honestly sitting fastball and saying don’t be late, but he hung a curveball and I didn’t miss it. Everything’s been slowing down for me. I feel like I’m able to see every single pitch and recognize it early. I feel better than I’ve ever felt right now.”
The Commodores got back in the game with a two-out knock from Anthony Hall. Hall tripled down the right field line to score two runs. A throwing error turned the triple into a little league home run as Hall crossed the plate to cut the Cotuit lead to 10-5.
The Kettleers got one back in the sixth as Grady followed Brown’s lead. The Dallas Baptist product sent a solo shot into the Cotuit bullpen to push the lead back to six. The homer was Grady’s fourth of the summer and second of the home-and-home series with Falmouth.
Roberts raved about Grady’s performance in the leadoff spot after the game. “He’s my kind of leadoff guy. He’s got speed and can hit the ball out of the ballpark and he’s an outstanding outfielder. Those type of guys are very difficult to find. I’m thrilled with him in the leadoff spot.”
Falmouth gets tying run to plate, Geig slams the door
Zach Fruit (Eastern Michigan) toed the rubber in the eighth inning with an 11-6 lead. Fruit dug himself a hole with back-to-back walks, but dialed in to extinguish the rally. Fruit struck out back-to-back batters on just eight pitches. He stranded both runners as Suggs tracked down a pop up near the left field foul line. A Ritter sacrifice fly gave the Kettleers a 12-6 lead after eight.
The Commodores opened the ninth with three straight singles. A ground out, wild pitch, and passed ball cut the lead to three. Max Gieg (Boston College) came in the game as the tying run stepped to the plate with one out. Gieg struck out the first batter he faced on four pitches. The right-hander induced a routine fly-out to center to strand two runners on base and close out the game.
Roberts said, “That’s a difficult situation for any pitcher to come into. Max handled it really well. The pitchers have picked up each other a lot and they did it again tonight.”
Dalton Rogers (Southern Miss): 3+ IP, 2 H, 5 K, 1 R
Brown: 2-4, 2 R, 2 RBI, HR
Grady: 2-5, 2 R, RBI, HR
Roberts: 1-3, 2 R, 2 RBI, BB
Suggs: 1-4, HR, R, 2 RBI
Ritter: 1-3, 2 R, 2 RBI
Bridges: 1-3, 2 RBI, R, 2B
Up next: Cotuit will hit the road on Monday to head to Bourne for their last game against a Western Division opponent. The Kettleers are 2-2 against the Braves this season. First pitch will be at 6:00 PM from Doran Park.