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Home Woes Continue for the Anglers, Drop Game to Harwich

by Mike Morris, 07-15-2011

Every Friday in the CCBL the host team, no matter what its official colors, dons red jerseys in a show of support for the men and women of the United States military.

Despite the novel uniforms (red jerseys with white lettering), it was the same old story for the Anglers on the diamond. The Harwich Mariners (17-11) defeated Chatham (8-20-1) by the score of 9-3.

Veterans Field in Chatham was the site of Friday's contest that pitted Anglers' lefty Chad Gallagher (Marist) against Mariners' southpaw Tanner Perkins (Western Kentucky).

Nine innings, and 2 hours and 26 minutes later, Perkins had improved his record to 2-1, pitching 5.1 innings, allowing three runs, and walking none. Gallagher fell to 2-3 on the season, giving up seven runs (six earned) through five innings of work.

The Anglers did rack up nine hits, but surrendering nine runs and two errors, coupled with a lack of late-inning clutch hitting, meant that Chatham had failed to carry over the crisp play of Thursday night's victory.

Harwich, to its credit, is a talented team that sits in second place in the Eastern Division (behind Brewster). The Mariners were relentless at the plate, totaling 14 hits and putting runs across in five separate innings.

In the top of the first, it became evident that Harwich would put the bat on the ball, forcing Chatham's defense to make plays.

A Mike Garza (Georgetown) double, then steal of third base, set up the game's first run. The next batter, LSU's Austin Nola, chopped a ball to Anglers' second baseman Joe Sever (Pepperdine), who had no choice but to go to first base with the throw. Garza scored easily.

Two groundouts began the top of the second inning. After a bloop single by Keith Werman (UVA), Chatham's Gallagher then committed one of baseball's cardinal sins by walking the number nine batter Alex Swim (Elon) on four pitches.

The lefty hurler from Marist would answer for his transgressions when the next batter, Ronnie Richardson (Central Florida), hit an RBI single to left center field. Evan Marzilli (South Carolina) threw a frozen rope to third base that beat Swim, ending the inning. But the Mariners led 2-0.

The boost Chatham received from Marzilli's great defensive play seemed to translate into momentum at the plate.

Sever led off the home half of the second with a towering home run to center field.

In the next frame, the Anglers managed to tie the score, 2-2. With one out and runners on second and third, Chatham's Dane Phillips (OK State) hit a grounder to second base that was slow enough to score Marzilli from third base. When Richie Shaffer (Clemson) popped out to end the inning, though, the Anglers had already left four runners stranded through three innings.

Defensively, the fifth inning was a nightmare for Anglers' manager John Schiffner.

Garza sent a soft liner into center field that was seemingly going to be caught by Marzilli, but the ball squirted out of the glove of the diving centerfielder for a hit. When Gallagher walked the next batter, cleanup batter Jabari Henry (Florida International) made him pay.

Henry laced a double by the third base bag, scoring one run. The throw to the plate was too high, and by the time the ball caromed off of the backstop and was retrieved by catcher J.T. Watkins (West Point), another run had crossed the plate for Harwich, who now led 4-2.

An RBI sac fly would make the score 5-2 before the inning was over.

A two-base error on Phillips in right field would set up the next batch of Mariners' runs in the top of the sixth inning. With the bases loaded and nobody out, new Chatham pitcher Pat Light (Monmouth) struck out Richardson, but then was gashed for a two-run ground rule double by Garza.

After six innings, Chatham trailed Harwich 7-2.

"Chad pitched well," said skipper John Schiffner. "We just didn't play well behind him."

Though the Boys in Red would scrap together one more run in the bottom of the sixth, courtesy of a Sever single, followed by a two-base error in right field, the Anglers never really threatened for the remainder of the night.

Schiffner refused to blame the unproductive offense on the man calling balls and strikes behind the plate, who, in the eyes of both squads, struggled to find a consistent strike zone.

"That doesn't have anything to do with the fact that we have to hit," said Schiffner. "We got nine hits, but no clutch hits."

The Mariners tacked on two more runs, thanks to a ninth inning RBI single, followed by an RBI triple, off of reliever Harry Marino (Williams), for a final score of 9-3.

The string of consecutive games continues for Chatham on Saturday, when the Y-D Red Sox visit Veterans Field for a 7 p.m. ET start time.

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