COTUIT- The Kettleers offense poured on 13 hits and Reid Johnston (NC State) gave the Gatemen batters fits all ball game in 11-3 win
The tone was set immediately by the Kettleers in the 1stinning. Nick Gonzales (New Mexico), one of the best college baseball hitters in 2019, showed why towering his 3rdhome run of the summer giving Cotuit a 1-0 lead. Things only got worse for William Fleming (Wake Forest) and the Gatemen in the 2ndinning. Gonzales once again tagged Fleming; this time for a triple and Cotuit jumped out to a 4 run lead.
Fleming’s night was ended after the 2ndinning with Eric Torres (Kansas State) taking over. Coming into the game Torres proved to be one of the most reliable arms for the Gatemen. In 3.2 innings Torres allowed no runs, only 1 walk, and struck out 5 batters. Torres had an uncharacteristic performance tonight and ended more abruptly than he would have liked.
In just 2 innings of work Torres allowed 4 runs on 4 hits. Torres was removed from the game in the middle of an at-bat due to an injury. No updates were provided on the status of Torres but he looked very uncomfortable on the mound before heading to the dugout.
By the time Torres’ night was over the Gatemen have dug themselves into a steep 6-0 hole. Michael Webb (Rhode Island College) came in for Torres looking to limit any further damage. On Webb’s first pitch the Kettleers scored on a sacrifice fly, but Webb was solid from there on out.
Webb joined the Gatemen recently from a small division 3 program, but looked very comfortable facing some of the best college baseball players in the country. Webb had a nice debut going 2 innings only allowing 2 hits and 1 run striking out 3 batters.
“I felt a little sped up out there but that was bound to happen with that being my first time out there on a bigger stage” Webb said. “This is the same game no matter who I am facing so I approached it as playing the game not playing against the batter. Next time I would like to slow down more but overall I think this was a good learning experience for me.”
The Kettleers did not have the same consistency issues with their pitching tonight. Johnston was lights out not walking a single batter and only allowed 2 hits and no runs in 5 innings of action. The Gatemen offense did not look like themselves tonight coming into the game leading the CCBL in basically every offensive category.
Cotuit played as though they have the best offense in the CCBL as 3 Kettleers had multi-hit games and all but 1 player in the starting lineup reached base. The Gatemen haven’t given up more than 4 runs since June 6thso tonight obviously had a lot to do with how well the Kettleers played offensively.
The Gatemen almost had one of their signature multiple run innings in the 8thinning. The bases were loaded with one outs but two groundouts spoiled what could have been an explosive inning. One of those groundouts was hit by Kameron Guangorena (Cal State Fullerton) who currently is in a slight hitting slump with 1 hit in his last 17 at-bats.
Some standout players for the Gatemen were Braiden Ward (Washington), Mike Antico (St. Johns), and Jacob Teter (Florida Southern). Ward was 1-4 with a single but made the most of it turning a pick-off attempt into a run on savvy base running and sloppy Cotuit defense. Antico was 2-4, and Teter bounced back after a slow night in Chatham going 2-4 with an RBI.
As for Cotuit, Gonzales, Cameron Hill (Kentucky), and Donta Williams (Arizona) had great nights at the plate. Gonzales was phenomenal finishing a double shy of the cycle going 4-5 with 5 RBI, Hill was 1-4 with 2 RBI, and Williams was 2-3 with 1 RBI.
Johnston was awarded the win for his efforts while Fleming earned the loss. The Wareham Gatemen still sit atop of the Western Division with a record of (8-6-1) but the Cotuit Kettleers have a chance to take that spot tomorrow night in Wareham at 6:30 p.m. holding a (7-6-2) record.
Photo by: Kristin Ostrowski