By: Dylan Vazzano
DORAN PARK, BOURNE, MA-Hyannis dropped their second straight to begin the summer of 2012, going down in a wild back and forth affair, 3-2 to the Bourne Braves. The Harbor Hawks showed their resiliency throughout the course of the evening, coming back from two late inning one run deficits, but ultimately fell short of knotting their record at 1-1.
Scoreless over the game’s first four and a half innings, Bourne broke through in the bottom of the fifth. With the bases full of Braves and only one down, Josh Dezse (Ohio State) skied a fly to deep enough to right to bring home Jack Reinheimer (East Carolina) for the first run of the contest.
Hyannis would respond immediately in the ensuing frame, after Steve Wilkerson (Clemson) led off the inning with an infield single. Will Callaway (Appalachian State) advanced Wilkerson to second on a sacrifice bunt, before a DJ Peterson (New Mexico) groundout to short put Wilkerson 90 feet away from deadlocking the score. Up stood Brad Zebedis (Presbyterian), who wasted no time by swinging at the first pitch and lacing it into center to give the Hawks their first run of the game.
The damage was done off Tyler King (Nebraska), who entered the sixth after his fellow collegiate teammate Jon Keller (Nebraska) was lights out through the first five. The native of Cedar Rapids, Iowa tossed five innings of scoreless baseball, surrendering just one hit, while fanning an impressive nine Harbor Hawks.
The seesaw affair took full swing after the Braves responded with a run in the bottom of the sixth, before Hyannis came back with one in the top of the seventh to tie the score at 2-2. Zach Alvord (Auburn) did the honors for the Hawks, picking up a pinch hit RBI groundout to plate Zac Zellers (Kentucky) who had previously walked, advanced to second on a Blake Austin (Auburn) grounder, and stole third to set up the Hyannis tying run.
Then in the bottom of the seventh Bourne took the lead again…this time for good. John Murphy (Sacred Heart) started things off with a walk, before Mike Ahmed (Holy Cross) came up with the contest’s defining moment. Ahmed blasted an RBI triple over the head of Hawks’ centerfielder Bobby Andrews (Auburn), bringing around Murphy to propel the Braves to a 3-2 lead. The crushing blow came off Hyannis reliever Matt Maurer (Pepperdine), who was saddled with his first loss of the season.
The Harbor Hawks had one final crack at the game in the top of the eighth inning. Facing 2011 Cape League All-Star reliever John Farrell (William & Mary), Wilkerson led off the frame with a double to give Hyannis late life. However Farrell would not allow Wilkerson to make it even as far as third, wiggling out of the jam and keeping the Hawks off the board to earn his first victory of the season. Josh Dezse came on and pitched a hitless ninth to record his first save of the season.
Despite the loss, Hyannis enjoyed another stellar performance by Steve Wilkerson, who now has five hits, including two doubles in his first two Cape League games. “Today I tried to just stick with my approach and battle,” said Wilkerson on tonight’s success. “As far as our team goes, we need to continue to stick with our plan and approach at the plate. The pitchers just need to keep doing what they are doing and hopefully we can get it going on offense.”
The Harbor Hawks will look to break their two-game slide as they end their three-game season opening road trip with a matchup against the Harwich Mariners on Saturday night. First pitch at Whitehouse Field is scheduled for 7:00pm.