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Gatemen open season with 11-10 victory over Falmouth

Cade Sullivan (Western Michigan) rounds third and heads for home during Wareham’s 11-10 win over the Falmouth Commodores on Opening Day, June 10, 2023 at Guv Fuller Field in Falmouth. Photo by Maddy Djuric

The Gatemen looked to get a win at Guv Fuller Field against the Falmouth Commodores on Opening Day. The two Western Division teams had a disappointing season in 2022 and looked to start off strong. 

The Gatemen jumped out in front in the top of the first. Designated hitter Dylan Goldstein (Florida Atlantic) had the first hit of the night with a single and,looking to add to his spark,stole second during the next at-bat. First baseman Cade Sullivan (Western Michigan) stood tall in the box and hit a strong ball that the Falmouth shortstop was unable to handle, allowing Goldstein to score. 

The Commodores were retired in order to quickly put Wareham back on offense. Right fielder David Glancy (St. John’s) walked into the game ready to put his name in the scorebook, and after reaching via a walk, he went to work. 

Glancy stole not just second, but third in the same frame. Left fielder CJ Funk (Pitt) singled and advanced on a throwing error by the catcher. The second baseman, Drake DiGiorno (UCSB) faced the struggling Falmouth pitcher with two runners on and smacked an RBI single to bring in Glancy. And shortstop Sebastian Murillo (Georgia) would not let the Commodores escape the inning before doing more damage, hitting a two-run double to make the score 4-0 in Wareham’s favor at the top of the second.

Falmouth was still unable to get things going, stranding their two runners. 

Sullivan led off in the top of the third and reached first again, this time with a single. The catcher Caleb Pendleton (FAU) took advantage of another error by the Commodores and Sullivan came in to score. 

Ryan Osinski (Bucknell) started on the mound for the Gatemen in Saturday night’s matchup. After pitching two innings and giving up an RBI double to put Falmouth on the board, he was relieved by Kyle Roche (Franklin Pierce) with one aboard. Although Roche struggled, the Gatemen defense were able to get the final outs needed to keep leading the Commodores 5-4 at the end of the third. 

DiGiorno aimed to stay hot in his second at-bat and did just that. His single and another Gatemen stolen base put him in scoring position. DiGiorno and Murillo took advantage of yet another error and a wild pitch to score. Manager Ryan Smyth said his team wants to be aggressive, and they were just that. 

“I want to play like we’re playing stickball in the backyard, not worried about making mistakes,” Smyth said. “We learn from mistakes, so go ahead play freely. If they see something then go ahead take it. Take a chance at it.” 

In the fourth inning, Glancy stepped into the box with runners in Sullivan and third baseman Will Cook (Louisville) aboard. He saw his pitch and cranked a three run homer over the outfield wall, the first home run for the Gatemen in the 2023 season, bringing the score to 10-4.

Falmouth added a run in the bottom of the fourth and fifth innings each, but their momentum was stopped for the time being thanks to a great defensive play by Pendleton to catch the runner stealing. 

At the top of the sixth, Murillo reached for his third time in the matchup and was eventually brought home by Cook’s sacrifice fly. 

“We just kept grinding out at bats,” Smyth said. “We put balls in play when we needed to. We had maybe one bad inning where we didn’t execute but other than that, offensively fantastic all day.”

With the next few innings wrapped up and another run by the Commodores in the bottom of the eighth, the Gatemen were three outs away from leaving Falmouth with their first win of the season. But the Commodores would not let them leave so soon. 

The Gatemen pitchers fought hard to close out the game but gave up two singles and several walks as the Commodores inched back into the game, one run at a time. Several walks later and another single gave Falmouth the chance to steal the opening day matchup from the Gatemen. 

The tying run was aboard and the go-ahead guy was up to bat. Brian Yetter (Marist) had entered in the ninth with a save opportunity. 

But the two necessary outs finally came and the Gatemen walked away with the 11-10 victory. Smyth said Wareham was lucky to come out of the game with a win.

“We knew this one wasn’t gonna be easy,” Smyth said. “It’s never easy the first game.” 

The Gatemen will play their season home opener against the Hyannis Harbor Hawks at Spillane Field with first pitch set for 6 p.m.. Smyth had one thing the team will take into Sunday’s game.

“We’re 1-0,” he said.