The outcome was not quite what the Gatemen had in mind, but Coach Jerry Weinstein still found plenty of positives
Despite leading 7-5 as the game went into the bottom of the ninth inning, Wareham saw the Bourne Braves score twice to tie the score and send it into extra innings. In extras, the Gatemen staff that included the likes of Jake Smith, Robbie Metz, and Jake Matthys combined to keep the Braves off the board as Wareham (6-5-1) ended up tying Bourne 7-7 in 12 innings on Thursday night at Doran Park.
The game was stopped after 12 innings due to Cape Cod Baseball League rules.
Wareham coach Jerry Weinstein said it was great to see his team – especially his staff – compete over the full 12 innings of play.
“In that ninth inning they never really hit the ball hard, but that is baseball. If you put the ball in play good things can happen and they did that,” said Weinstein on the ninth inning. “Our guys competed their butts off and we had some very unlikely heros tonight.”
Trailing 7-5 in the bottom of the ninth, the Braves (7-4-1) seemed to be on their way to dropping their fourth in five games. Bourne’s offense, however, had other ideas. Gregory Diechmann, Willy Yahn, and Evan Mendoza hit consecutive singles, loading the bases with just one man down. Next man up Garrett Wolforth hit a ground ball to second base that was not quite hit hard enough for a double play, bringing in Diechmann and cutting the Gatemen lead to 7-6.
One pitch later, the Gatemen looked to be on their way out of Bourne with a win, when Jake Mangum hit a high chopper between the pitchers mound and first base. Confusion ensued, however, causing the ball to be bobbled and the tying run to come across the plate.
Once the game reached extra innings, neither team found itself with a particularly strong opportunity to score in the tenth, but in the bottom of the 11th Wareham found themselves in an interesting predicament.
With two outs, Bourne was able to get the winning run on base as Mendoza laced a single into left field. Gatemen pitcher Jake Smith proceeded to walk Jimmy Herron on four pitches, moving Mendoza into scoring position.
Weinstein proceeded to come out to the mound, and pull in Robbie Metz from second base to get the final out of the 11th inning.
Metz did his job, inducing a fly ball to left field off the bat of Mississippi star Jake Mangum to retire the side.
After the game Metz said upon arrival he made it known he could pitch if need be.
“I pitched at school a few innings and came up here and told them that if they needed me to pitch I would,” said Metz. “We are running low on pitching a little bit especially with this game going extra innings. I just sort of volunteered. I was not planning on it but I will do whatever the (coaching staff) wants.”
Wareham trailed 3-0 after two innings due to a three spot put up by the Braves in the bottom half of the second. The Gatemen immediately responded.
Joey Bartosic knocked in Preston Grand Pre, who tripled to start the inning, to get the Gatemen on the board, and K.J. Harrison brought home Barotisc with a double down the left field. Moments later, Gavin Sheets lifted a single to center, scoring Harrison and tying the game at three aside.
Just one inning later, the Gatemen took their first lead of the day. Trevor Ezell drilled a leadoff triple into right center field, and came on into score on an RBI groundout off the bat of Andrew Tovalin putting Wareham up 4-3 after four innings.
The two teams separated by a lone run, 5-4, as the game headed into the top of the seventh inning when the Gatemen appeared to gain some separation.
Metz, Harrison, and Sheets began the frame with three consecutive singles to load the bases with nobody out. Two batters later, Ezell drew a walk, forcing in Metz with the Gatemen’s sixth run of the game. On a 2-2 pitch to Harrison Wenson, Braves’ pitcher Brady Little saw his curveball skip in the dirt, allowing Harrison to sprint on home and put Wareham on top 7-4 after seven and a half.