WAREHAM, MA: Wareham came into Monday night’s Western Division showdown with Hyannis having won three straight games on the road. Hyannis had won four straight games at home at McKeon Park. Something had to give.
And give the Gatemen did. Three total homers from the visiting team including Tyler Horan’s (Virginia Tech) eighth and ninth dingers of the season. That total is now good for second in the Cape tied with three other players including Wareham teammate Daniel Palka (Georgia Tech).
Gatemen starting pitcher Kendall Graveman (Mississippi State) gave up two runs early in the first and second inning against the Harbor Hawks, but slowly his offense backed him up.
Facing a 2-0 hole in the top of the third inning, Ethan Gross (Memphis) led off the inning with a double. Cole Sturgeon (Louisville) then laid down a sacrifice bunt to move him over to third. The very next batter Mott Hyde (Georgia Tech) hit a sacrifice fly to shallow center field and Gross tagged up and scored for the first Wareham run of the ballgame.
Three more runs crossed the plate for the Gatemen in the next inning. After Palka led off the inning with a single, Horan ripped his first home run of the night 395 feet over the wall in dead center field to put the Gatemen up 3-2. It was their first lead of the night and they would not give it up from there.
Two batters later Logan Uxa (Arkansas State) hit his first home run on the Cape this season to centerfield as well, this time barely over the wall as the ball popped out of Harbor Hawks center fielder Dominic Jose’s glove.
Gravemanonly allowed one baserunner in the third through fifth inning before surrendering a solo shot to Jose (Stanford) in the sixth. With a slim 4-3 lead, Wareham wanted some insurance runs.
Those runs came in the eighth inning. Still nursing the 1-run lead over Hyannis, Cole Sturgeon led off the inning with a double. Hyde reached on a dropped third strike, and Kyle Schwarber (Indiana) knocked them both home with a deep double to left. One batter later, Horan launched his second two-run bomb of the night, this one to left field putting the Gatemen up 8-3. Gross added an RBI single to put Wareham up 9-3.
Clay Chapman (Florida Southern) tossed the final two and a third innings for the Gatemen securing the six run victory. The win moves Wareham to 14-17 and puts them in second place in the Western Division while the loss drops Hyannis to 13-19.
The Gatemen are back in action tomorrow night at Whitehouse Field in Harwich to take on the first place Mariners (20-12). The field will also play home to Saturday’s all-star game, but first the Gatemen visit town. Fred Shepard (Amherst College) gets the start for Manager Cooper Farris). First pitch is set for 7 PM.