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Chatham folds at 'twilight' in 4-4 tie to Brewster

by Anish Vasudevan, 07-08-2022

Chatham folds at 'twilight' in 4-4 tie to Brewster

Brian Holiday hurdled over Cameron Fisher to try and place the tag. But Fisher had already touched home plate, diminishing Chatham’s lead to one against Brewster in the seventh inning.

Four batters later, another breaking ball from Holiday collided with the backstop. David Mendham crossed home for the tying fourth run under the gloomy sky.

“That’s twice in a short summer season that we’ve literally crumbled at twilight,” manager Tom Holliday said. “You can’t just keep beating yourself.”

The Anglers put two runners on base with walks in the top of the eighth, but the umpires signaled to wrap the show early. Chatham’s offense delivered early with two two-run home runs in the first five innings, but the Whitecaps matched its score on five hits in the final two innings.

Holiday last closed in the ninth against Harwich two days ago, appearing after Carlos Rey surrendered two base runners. An ensuing wild pitch and a passed ball cut Chatham’s lead to one.

“We let one get away,” Holliday said. “That was a big game for us. It was ours. Four (to) one in the ninth — you gotta win that game.”

The Harwich matchup and Friday’s fight began with similar scripts though. Guy Garibay Jr. smacked a solo blast at the top of the order in the first. The Anglers brought in three more runs before the end of the frame.

Caden Grice sweeped his feet over the dirt to clean the batter’s box before his first at-bat in the second inning against Brewster. Grice paused after smacking the ball high down the left field line, but the hit spiraled inside of the third base line.

Noah Ledford walked up to home plate, scorching the first pitch he saw over the right field fence. He pointed at new hitting coach Rusty Greer as he rounded first, and Grice stayed near home after stamping the opening run, tapping his helmet with Ledford’s.

Grice hopped into the box after Roc Riggio walked in the ensuing inning. He launched the ball to the same spot as Ledford, landing it just over the yellow crown on the outfield fence. Ledford extended his helmet out for another tap.

“They’re some guys that are starting to find their groove a little bit,” Holliday said about Ledford and Grice.

Cam Brown received an ice pack for his right shoulder in the bottom of the second. Roman Kimball, who hadn’t begun his warm up routine, was forced to piggyback early, taking his bullpen practice on the mound.

After receiving a cup of water from a batboy, Kimball settled in. His first three pitches unexpectedly went high as he propelled himself off the mound, p his left foot near the top of the mound. But he found his groove, striking out the first two batters he faced. Then, Jake DeLeo made a catch in right center, calling off right fielder Caden Grice to make the play.

Kimball struck out the side in the third inning before the one hit he allowed on the night came at the start of the fourth. Guy Garibay Jr. hauled in the hit which launched into shallow left field, diving onto the grass. He left his glove on the mound as he got up, and the out wasn’t given.

DeLeo made his second catch of the inning though, this time towards left center. The crowd at Stony Brook Field started to stomp, trying to throw off Kimball while he searched for the final out, but he delivered the final strike in ease, fist-bumping as he walked back to Chatham’s dugout.

Chatham’s offense came out energetic following Kimball’s final frame in the fourth. Riggio blasted the ball down the right field line to reach first. Noah Ledford then left the game after he was hit by a pitch, replaced by Johnny Castagnozzi at first. And Mitchell Daly finally went to first base as well after working a walk.

Hayden Travinski came to the plate with two outs and the bases loaded, watching the first two pitches before swinging and missing at the next. He hung his bat over his right shoulder, taking a weak move at the ball before pulling back. Riggio touched home plate, but Travinski was called for a swing.

In the sixth inning, the Anglers pitching and defense started to bend. Ricky Williams’ pitch to Chase Adkinson boomeranged back at him in the sixth inning, ricocheting off his left cleat. Brewster brought in its first run of the game.

Parks Harber’s ground ball hopped over Marcus Brown’s glove to add another run, concluding the initial threat on Chatham’s lead.