By Derek Kornhiser
HYANNIS, MA- It was another frustrating night at McKeon Park for the Harbor Hawks (15-26) as they fell short of victory to Falmouth (21-20) despite being neck and neck with them the entire game. It was back and forth between the two with a playoff-like atmosphere surrounding the game for Hyannis as Bourne had already fallen to Cotuit, meaning a win would tie them with the Braves for the final playoff spot in the Western Division. However, an RBI single by Falmouth’s Alex Maldonado (Holy Cross) in the top of the 8th broke the 5-5 tie and sent Falmouth to victory, as Hyannis failed to score in the final two frames despite having men in scoring position each inning.
Hyannis had the first lead of the game in the bottom of the first when Brad Zebedis (Presbyterian) singled to center, driving in Mitchell Garver (New Mexico). Falmouth then countered in the top of the 2nd with a 2 RBI triple by Eric Yavarone (UConn) and a sacrifice fly from Maldonado to put the Commodores up 3-1. Hyannis would battle back, however, as they scored twice on a strange play in the bottom of the third inning, which began with Garver singled to center, scoring Blake Sheppard (Viterbo). Garver rounded first and was halfway to second when it looked like he was going to be caught in a rundown, but instead retreated to an uncovered first base. While he returned to the bag, the Falmouth defense was caught off guard as Brett Michael Doran (Stanford) was able to sneak home with a close play at the plate and tied the game at 3.
Falmouth was able to go up again, however, as they added a run on a fielder’s choice in the 4th and a solo home run by Austin Anderson (Mississippi) that cleared the flag pole in right center field in the top of the 7th. Hyannis was again able to rally back in the bottom of the frame, scoring on RBI singles from Brandon Trinkwon (UC Santa Barbara) and Garver. It was not enough however, as Maldonado’s single in the 8th was the game winner, as Hyannis failed to score in the 8th with a runner at 3rd with no outs and in the 9th with runners on 2nd and 3rd and 1 out. The hard luck loss puts even more pressure on them heading into the single biggest game of the season tomorrow night as they head to Bourne to face the Braves.
Mitchell Garver continues to swing a hot bat for Hyannis, as he went 3 for 5 with a double and 2 RBI, and he too realizes the implications the challenge ahead for his team. “Tomorrow’s a big game for us. If we win we tie, and if we win by more than 8, theoretically speaking, and we end up tying at the end of the season, that’s our tiebreaker so this is a big game for us.” With just 2 games following against Y-D, this is their last chance to matchup against the Braves before the end of the season.
When asked about his ability to produce at a consistent level on the season, he responded with, “Just keeping the game simple. Trying not to put too much pressure on any at bat, just taking one at bat at a time.” Garver certainly has done that on the season, as he’s been one of the cornerstones of the offense and a key sparkplug for scoring runs on the year.
It should be a playoff atmosphere once again tomorrow in Bourne, as both teams are expected to throw their aces, as Hyannis with throw All Star David Garner (Michigan State) against Bourne’s Chad Green (Louisville). Game time is 6 pm.