All streaks must come to an end, and Chatham's impressive six-game winning streak to start the season came to an end on Wednesday night, as the Anglers (6-1) fell to the Bourne Braves (3-4) 1-0 at Doran Park.
After an offensive outburst the night before against Hyannis, where the Anglers scored ten runs and pounded out 15 hits in a 10-0 rout of the Harbor Hawks, the Chatham lineup was stymied by Bourne starter Jaron Long (Ohio State) and the Braves pitching staff.
"We just could never get in a groove," catcher Hunter Redman said. "It was their day, you have to tip your caps to them."
Chatham starter Aaron Garza (Houston) threw five solid innings, only allowing one run and eight hits, while striking out two. Garza lived dangerously on the mound, stranding runners in scoring position in the first four innings of his outing. Bourne broke through with a run on an RBI single in the third inning off of Garza, and as it turned out, that run was the deciding factor.
Photo by Chelsea Capwell, Chatham Anglers Kenny Koplove (Duke) throws to first- basemen A.J. Murray(Georgia Tech) for the out.
The Anglers got shutout performances in relief from Chad Sobotka (South Carolina- Upstate) and Jacob Dorris (Texas A&M- Corpus Christi), but the Angler offense could not produce a run of support.
"We came out a little flat," Redman said. "Today just was not our day."
With two outs in the ninth, it looked like Chatham would come up with some more late inning magic when left-fielder Josh Eldridge (Old Dominion) launched a long fly ball to center field, but it fell short, and was caught at the warning track to end the game. With that, one of the longest undefeated streaks in Cape League history came to an end.
"It never feels good to lose, but its only one loss on the season," Eldridge said. "We just need to clear are heads, take our day off, and get back to how we know how to play."
With an off day on Thursday, the Anglers will have a day to dwell on their first loss of the season before they face off against Hyannis on Friday night at Veterans field. Redman believes, though, that the off day will play to their advantage.
"We'll just use this as determination," Redman said. "We will come back out on Friday and play better than we did today."
Chatham was supposed to have an off day on Monday, June 17, but had to play a make-up game against Falmouth, forcing the Anglers to play six games straight. Although it is early in the season, the grind might have gotten to the team.
"I don't know whether we were in it as much as we could've been," Coach John Schiffner said. "We've been going at it for awhile now, so I think they might have been dragging a little."
While the team has not had to deal with the adversity of a loss so far in the young season, Schiffner has no doubt that his team will rebound quickly.
"They are going to take their day off, and they are going to come back on Friday and play," Schiffner said. "For me, there are no worries or problems. If we lose one game for every six wins this season, I will be pretty happy."
Check out the photos and video highlight of the game at Bourne below.