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Anglers Blast Brewster 9-1

by George Barclay, 07-05-2012

Anglers Blast Brewster 9-1 When it rains, it pours. On Thursday evening, the clutch hits came in bunches and the Chatham Anglers throttled the Brewster Whitecaps 9-1. In their eighteenth game of the season, the boys in red and blue clocked in their best effort of the young season, scoring all of their runs with two outs, tallying 10 hits, recording no errors and leading for the entire game.

"This was a really nice win," said manager John Schiffner. "It's really nice to jump out to a 7-0 lead early. Our guys are really good players who are really starting to figure the game out. It's so much easier to make the other team play from behind early in the game."

Box Score

Game 18: Chatham 9, Brewster 1

Maine right-hander Thomas Lawrence (1-0, 0.68 ERA) was the winning pitcher for the Anglers (10-8). Lawrence pitched six and a third scoreless innings, allowing six hits and striking out five batters. The sophomore plowed through the Whitecaps lineup, throwing a bevvy of first-pitch strikes and issuing no walks over the course of his outing.

"Tommy Lawrence was outstanding," said Schiffner. "He did a video tonight on textbook pitching. He worked fast, threw strikes and changed speeds. He just did a great job out there."

Chatham's bullpen was also effective, allowing one run over two and two thirds innings. Pepperdine southpaw Brian McIlhenny (0-0, 0.00 ERA) fanned two batters and gave up just one hit and Southern New Hampshire's Alex Powers (0-0, 1.93 ERA) surrendered one run on two hits and struck out one batter. Along with Lawrence, McIlhenny began the season as a temporary player and earned a full contract via strong outings on the mound.

"Those guys are a great story," said Schiffner. "We weren't sure what we were going to do with them once the season started. They had every opportunity to make the team and they earned it. Today was a great example of all the work they've put in so far."

Washington State's James Leckenby (1-1, 9.45 ERA) suffered the loss for the Whitecaps (7-11). Leckenby allowed seven runs on four hits in one and two thirds innings and struck out three. Brewster's bullpen was able to stop most of the bleeding against the Anglers, giving up two runs in seven and a third innings. The only Whitecap reliever to give up runs was Wake Forest southpaw Niko Spezial (1-0, 7.43 ERA), who surrendered two earned runs on three hits in two innings.

Chatham jumped onto the scoreboard early with a four-run first inning. With two outs and the bases loaded, shortstop Pat Valaika (UCLA) pounded a three-run double to deep right field. In the next at-bat, first baseman Alex Calbick (Maine) hit an RBI double to left field. The Anglers tacked on three more runs in the top of the second inning after a three-run home run to left field by catcher Andrew Knapp (California). Chatham would add two insurance runs in the top of the seventh when Valaika hit a two-run double to right field, giving him five RBI for the game. In just seven games this season, Valaika has a .231 batting average and seven RBI.

"Pat had two huge hits," said Schiffner. "He had a huge hit to get us started and one to shut the door late. He made everything so much easier for us today."

In addition, Maine second baseman Mike Fransoso extended his hitting streak to 11 games. The scrappy middle infielder has put in a lot of time with assistant coach Pat McGee in batting practice of late and is becoming a better hitter to the opposite field.

"Mike was one of the last guys we signed to a contract in April," said Schiffner. "I got a chance to see him play a couple of times. We had an infield opening and I'm not looking back. He's done a great job. He can play all over the infield and the outfield if we need it. It's fabulous. That's what the Cape League is all about."

Despite getting eight hits, Brewster only scored one run on an RBI double by pinch hitter Spencer Navin (Vanderbilt) in the bottom of the ninth. The Whitecaps stranded nine runners on base and struck out eight times.

Chatham will return to Veterans Field on Friday night to take on the Harwich Mariners (13-5) at 7 p.m. Friday's broadcast will be a special one, marking the tenth anniversary of the Cape Cod Baseball Network, a broadcasting outlet started by Dan D'Uva and Guy Benson, two former Chatham broadcasters. Both D'Uva and Benson will be back on the air, providing live play-by-play commentary and speaking with a host of special guests. For live coverage of Friday's game, tune into the Anglers Extra Pregame Show at 6:40 p.m. at TRZ Teamline.

In other recent news, Chatham's July 10 game at Bourne has been moved to Monday, July 9 at 6 p.m. due to a scheduling conflict at Doran Park.

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