Wins in the first week of the season do not get much more exciting than Chatham's 3-2 victory over Wareham Tuesday night.
With the score knotted at 2, a runner on first and two outs in the bottom of the ninth, Addison Johnson (Clemson) stepped to the plate at a chilly Veterans Field. The Clemson Tiger looped a 1-2 pitch into shallow left and Gatemen leftfielder Blake Dean (LSU) began to charge as the remaining crowd rose to their feet. Dean went for the head first diving catch, but the ball bounced in front of him. As the ball trickled past the laid out Wareham leftfielder, Travis Beausoleil (UCONN-Avery Pt.), who was running on the pitch, came all the way around from first to score the winning run.
Johnson's walk-off RBI single made a winner out of reliever Bryan Shaw (Long Beach State), who surrendered a game tying solo home run to Dean in the top of the eighth.
Chatham jumped out in front in the fourth on two errors by Gatemen first baseman Dustin Dickerson (Baylor). After Allan Dykstra (Wake Forest) smoked a grounder through Dickerson to leadoff the inning, Dickerson misplayed another grounder, this one off the bat of Sean O'Brien (Virginia Tech), and the A's had a 1-0 lead on an unearned run.
A's starter Gavin Brooks (UCLA) gave up one run on three hits in 4 1/3 innings. Kevin Couture (USC) relieved him and was perfect in his 2 2/3 innings of work, keeping the Gatemen at bay and allowing Chatham to grab a 2-1 lead on an O'Brien single.
The score stayed 2-1 until Dean's home run off Shaw landed on the hill beyond the right field fence and tied the score in the eighth. All was forgiven, however, as soon as Beausoleil's 5'10'' frame crossed home plate.
Chatham is back in action tomorrow at Doran Park in Bourne. First pitch is set for 5pm.