by Zane Moses
Pitching and defense lifted the Falmouth Commodores to their first victory on Thursday as they defeated the Harwich Mariners 4-1.
The Commodores locked down the Mariners on defense, a vast improvement for a team that was shaky on defense in their first two games. Dominant pitching, solid defense, and timely hitting were the main factors in a hard fought victory.
For the first time this season the Commodores drew first blood. They managed to hit three consecutive singles to start off the game. Center fielder JB Woodman’s (Ole Miss) hit knocked in the lead off batter, left fielder Boomer White (Texas A&M), scoring the first run of the game.
The Commodores continued to hit well in the next inning. Designated hitter Mitch Longo (Ohio University) hit a lead off single and subsequently was driven home by a single from shortstop Tristan Gray (Rice). At the end of two the Commodores were ahead 2-0.
Despite the early lead, the Commodores missed opportunities to run up the score in the first two innings as a runner was picked off at second and they were caught stealing twice.
In the bottom of the fourth another mental error allowed a Harwich runner to get to third on a balk, and a sacrifice fly ball cut the score in half, 2-1. With one out a Mariner batter hit a triple and threatened to tie the game, fortunately relief pitcher Andrew Frankenreider (Northern Illinois University) entered the game and was able to maintain the lead.
The Commodores were able to get the run back in the top of the sixth. Right fielder Heath Quinn (Samford University) rocketed a double to left center field that hit off the wall and drove home JB Woodman.
“I just tried to come up there and just tried to be aggressive on the first pitch and just hit it hard somewhere,” Quinn said.
In the top of the ninth the impressive Falmouth hitting display continued when Boomer White hit a blooping RBI single to left to give the team a greater cushion heading into the bottom of the inning. A cushion they would not need; even though the Mariners threatened in the ninth, the game ended 4-1 in favor of Falmouth.
The pitching truly stood out in this matchup, specifically the outing Andrew Frankenreider delivered. He not only worked his way out of a dangerous situation in the fourth, he threw three more shutout innings, recording four strikeouts and giving up no hits.
Frankenreider said, “I just tried to stay relaxed, throw strikes, let them put the ball in play and let my players take care of it.”
The Commodores are back in action Friday at home against the Cotuit Kettleers at 6:00 p.m. For more information about the Falmouth Commodores, visit the team’s website at http://www.falmouthcommodores.com.