WAREHAM, MA: For the second time in three games, Wareham couldn’t overcome a daunting early deficit. On Wednesday at Harwich, the Gatemen fell behind 6-0 and lost 6-5. Tonight, Wareham spotted the Kettleers a 5-0 first inning lead and never recovered in a 9-4 loss at Spillane Field.
Making his first start since June 29, Dan Tobik (UT-Martin) wasn’t up to the challenge for the Gatemen. The bleeding started when the second hitter of the game, Daniel Aldrich (College of Charleston), crushed a solo home run over the right field fence. Later in the first, with runners on first and second and two outs, Jacob May (Coastal Carolina) roped a single up the middle to push the edge to 2-0 in favor of Cotuit. Two batters later, Jacob Valdez (San Jose State) slammed a two out, two strike bases clearing double that plated three runs and made it 5-0.
In the bottom of the first, the Gatemen battled right back against Cotuit starter Zach Bargeron (West Virginia). With two on and one out, Tyler Horan (Virginia Tech) drove in his thirtieth run of the season with an RBI single that cut the deficit to 5-1. Two batters later, Ty Ross (LSU) drove Horan in from second with an RBI single of his own. That was enough for Cotuit manager Mike Roberts to pull Bargeron in favor of relief ace Ryan Connolly (Coastal Carolina). The move paid off as Connolly limited the Gatemen offense to just two runs over the next four and a third innings.
Following the early deficit, the Gatemen offense had been steadily chipping away as its bullpen held the Kettleers offense in check. However, trailing 6-4 in the eighth, Wareham allowed three insurance runs when Adam Nelbowich (Washington State) and Aldrich ripped clutch two out RBI hits to centerfield. Seven of the Kettleers nine runs in the game came with two outs.
Nowfacing the same five run deficit they had spent the whole game trying to overcome, the Gatemen went down quietly in order in the bottom of the ninth against Cotuit closer Dan Slania (Notre Dame).
Warehamhas now lost three games in a row to drop to 17-22. With five games left, they lead fourth place Bourne by just one game and fifth place Hyannis by two and a half in the Western Division playoff race.