Waves Complete Doubleheader Sweep Of SteepleCats
Most can believe the saying that good things come in pairs, but if you were to ask the SteepleCats on Thursday night, they’d say something quite different.
After their game at Joe Wolfe Field earlier this year was postponed due to rain, the SteepleCats took a long bus ride to Rhode Island on Thursday to take on the Ocean State Waves in a doubleheader at Old Mountain Field. With the SteepleCats facing pitching troubles, the Waves offense took advantage and score a total of 16 runs to sweep the SteepleCats in the doubleheader.
After the SteepleCats offense has come out swinging early in recent games, Thursday’s first game proved to be different. Both sides were held quiet in the first innings, as SteepleCats starting pitcher Jeff Hayner and Waves starting pitcher Steven Theetge dealt their way through the first three innings unscathed.
Yet this scoreless effort finally broke in the 4th for Ocean State. With two runners on, an infield single sent a Waves to plate the first run of the ball game. Then shortly after with the bases loaded, Grant English roped a ground rule double over the wall to score two runs, making it 3-0 after the top of the 4th.
In the 5th, Hayner was relieved new SteepleCat Patrick Colvin. A Lenox High School graduate, the Lasell College Junior dealt his way through the Waves in the top of the 5th to gives his team an opportunity to score in the bottom half of the inning.
His teammates took Colvin up on this opportunity, putting the first North Adams run up on the scoreboard courtesy of a Matt Koperniak RBI single.
With the score now 3-1, the Waves found themselves back in a scoring opportunity in the top of the 6th. Quickly finding the first two outs, Colvin struggled to find the strike zone for the third, walking two and surrendering a single to load the bases. A walk to Ryan Ward then brought in a Wave to increase their lead to three runs. With the bases still loaded, the Southern Division’s starting first baseman in this Sunday’s All-Star Game Garrett Hodges sent a single into the outfield, scoring two runs and giving the Waves a 6-1 lead.
Failing to find offense 6th inning, the SteepleCats looked for a now big comeback in the 7th. After reaching on an error by the shortstop, outfielder Greg Cavaliere found his way all around the basepath to score a run for North Adams to then trail 6-2. However, this was the last of the SteepleCats scoring, as the next two at-bats produced two flyouts, securing a game one win for the Waves.
Unlike game one, the offense busted out right away for the home team. Against SteepleCats starting pitcher Sam Dobbins, the Waves plated two runs in the bottom of the 1st courtesy of a Cullen Smith double and a wild pitch.
Ocean State’s starting pitcher Thomas Miller was only able to the hold North Adams at bay until the top of the third. Sending a double deep into the outfield, outfielder James Ciliento later crossed the dish after a wild pitch to cut the Waves lead to one.
The Waves then quickly responded in the bottom half of the inning, scoring three runs off two singles to put more distance on North Adams heading into the 4th.
The scoring efforts for the SteepleCats continued against Miller in the top of the 4th starting off with a Matt Koperniak RBI double. Three batters later, a passed ball allowed Jackson Coutts to score to make it a 5-3 contest.
This however was the last time the game was close, as the Waves then light up the scoreboard in the bottom of the 4th.
With Sam Dobbins night ending after the 3rd, position player Jeffery Brown was called upon to take the hill for North Adams. Brown, an All-Star centerfielder for North Adams, put out his best effort but the Waves put the barrel to the ball, plating five runs in the 4th including one off a solo home run to take a commanding 10-3 lead.
After a scoreless 5th, the SteepleCats were able to scrounge up some offense against relief pitcher Zemp Schwab. With two on, catcher Cris Ruiz used his powerful bat to rake a ball into the outfield, scoring second baseman Chad Minato to lessen the Waves lead.
Unfortunately for the SteepleCats, Schwab held the bats empty in the next inning, leaving two North Adams runners on via walks as the Waves claimed victory in game two for the doubleheader sweep at Old Mountain Field.
The SteepleCats return home on Friday and Saturday for their last home games of the 2018 season. On Friday, the SteepleCats will face the Danbury Westerners at 6:30 while on Saturday the Keene SwampBats will travel to Joe Wolfe Field for another doubleheader with the first game starting at 3:30. Tickets for SteepleCats home game can be purchased online at www.steeplecats.org or at the ticket booth one hour prior to the game’s start.