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Wareham defense falters in 7-3 loss to Harwich

Keegan Allen (West Virginia) pitches during Wareham’s 7-3 loss to the Harwich Mariners, June 29, 2023 at Whitehouse Field in Harwich. Photo by Maddy Djuric.

The road woes continued for the Gatemen as they dropped the Thursday night matchup against the Harwich Mariners 7-3. Wareham hasn’t won a game away from Spillane Field this season except for opening night at Guv. Fuller Field against the Falmouth Commodores. The Gatemen recorded three errors on the night in the loss, something manager Ryan Smyth said is out of the ordinary for his team.

“We just played a little sloppy and it’s uncharacteristic for us,” Smyth said. “Bats were a little quiet. We had some opportunities but it just didn’t fall our way tonight.”

Wareham scored first immediately when Nick McLain (Arizona State) singled and stole second. Grant Hussey (West Virginia) used the momentum from his six-RBI game against Yarmouth-Dennis to send a long double to put the Gatemen on the board. Three runners in Hussey, Zack Stewart (Missouri State) and Tommy Splaine (Arizona) were left stranded.

In the bottom half of the inning, Harwich tied things up with a run off a sacrifice fly before the side was retired.

The top of the second started with Garen Caulfield (Arizona) and JC Colon (Missouri) reaching base via a walk and an error to bring up Josh Stevenson (LSU). Stevenson did his job with an RBI sacrifice fly, bringing Caulfield in to score and moving the runner over. McLain stepped into the box and hit an RBI single to send Colon across the plate. 

The Mariners jumped on Wareham starting pitcher Casey Tallent (Clemson) who ended his outing just after one inning, but not before the bases were loaded with no outs. The Mariners took advantage of a Gatemen fielding error for a run and added their third with another sacrifice fly. 

James Hepp (UCLA) came in for relief for Tallent and was able to escape the inning with only minimal damage. The same was not the case in the bottom of the fourth. Several costly errors by the Gatemen defense would put four runs up on the scoreboard for Harwich. The kicker: three of the four runs were unearned.

The Gatemen had the chance to get things going in the top of the sixth, but left the bases juiced for the second time in the game.

Hepp ended his night with three innings pitched and gave up two hits while striking out three before he was relieved by Keegan Allen (West Virginia). Allen came in and took control to keep the Mariners at bay. Allen threw three scoreless innings in an attempt to help keep his team in the game. After struggling in his first outing and starting to get in a groove, manager Ryan Smyth says this is key to Allen’s success.

“It was huge for him,” Smyth said. “To get back out there and for him to prove he belongs here which I know he built a lot of confidence tonight and so did we in him.”

The Gatemen make their second stop on the road trip schedule on Friday night to face the Cotuit Kettleers with first pitch set for 5 p.m..