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Gatemen slam brakes on losing streak, beat Anglers 8-4

Landon Wallace (West Virginia) dives safely into third during Wareham’s 8-4 win over the Chatham Anglers, June 23, 2023 at Spillane Field in Wareham. Photo by Maddy Djuric.

The Gatemen bats were hot as they hit their way into the win column and put a halt to the three game skid Friday night. Back at Spillane Field, Wareham got their revenge on the Chatham Anglers with a final score of 8-4.

The game came alive in the bottom of the first. After already giving up one run, the Gatemen loaded the bases. Landon Wallace (West Virginia), Zack Stewart (Missouri State) and Garen Caulfield (Arizona) stood on the bags ready to go. 

Grant Hussey (West Virginia) stepped into the box looking to redeem himself after Thursday night’s major error in the bottom of the ninth against the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox. Hussey quickly fell behind the count and had one strike left to work with. With one swing of the bat, Hussey sailed the ball over the right field wall and trotted the bases with four RBI on his belt with a Gatemen grand slam. 

David Glancy (Notre Dame transfer) hit a sacrifice fly before the grand slam to bring home Josh Stevenson (LSU) after he reached on a single. The single continued Stevenson’s high-power hitting at the plate.

“Baseball is all about confidence and I think my confidence right now is big,” Stevenson said. “I think that’s a big part of my success right now.” 

 The big offensive inning gave the Gatemen a 5-1 lead and they never looked back. 

Wareham tacked on another run in the very next inning when Wallace crossed home on Glancy’s second RBI of the night to increase the gap between the Gatemen and the Anglers.

Brett Wichrowski (Bryant) continued to be a force to reckon with on the mound, only surrendering one more run on the night. The Bryant Bulldog would end his night going for five innings while giving up two hits. The Gatemen defense was able to bail Wichrowski out of a scary bases loaded situation in the second inning so the righty could go for more innings and secure the win.

The pitching has been a weak spot for the Gatemen staff but came through in tonight’s matchup. Bryson Shaffer (Coastal Carolina) and Will Koger (Louisville) came in for relief for the next three innings and earned a hold on the night.

Hussey added another RBI to his total with a single to score Dorian Gonzalez (University of Miami). Wareham ended the fourth leading the Anglers by five. 

“He (Smyth) loves our offense,” Stevenson said “He thinks with guys on bases, moving the ball, you score runs. “Just putting the ball in play, good things happen.”

The next innings flew by, but not before Hussey continued his huge night with his sixth RBI of the night on a ground rule double. The impressive stat marks a new game high for the Gatemen and CCBL.

Manager Ryan Smyth was happy with the offense’s ability to back up the night’s pitchers.

“Our hitters allowed him (Wichrowski) to settle in and have the night that he had,” Smyth said.

Things got a little iffy in the final two innings. Chatham scored an unearned run on a fielding error to start chipping away at the lead. A quick bottom of the eighth put the Anglers back up to bat.

Yoel Tejeda (Florida State transfer) came in for his Gatemen debut to close out the game and get the Gatemen back in the win column. 

Although they were down to their last out, Chatham got runners on the bases with their second walk and a single. A second single would bring in another run but the defense was able to get the final out and snap their losing streak. Stevenson looks to help his team bring the same energy into their Saturday night matchup against the league leader Cotuit Kettleers.

“Hopefully you carry this momentum into tomorrow and build on it,” Stevenson said. “Get a little win streak going.”