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Every one of the nine pitches held more weight than the last. Every “slow clap,” that started with a pair of hands then spread to the entire Cotuit crowd, felt louder than the last. Ten total runs couldn’t separate two teams through 6.2 innings, and Jeff Gelinas (Maine) and Jackson Glines were on an island all their own.
With the bases and loaded and two outs in the seventh, Gelinas needed to retire Glines to get out of a jam. But Glines laid off the right fastball at the right time, and Gelinas walked in the game’s winning run.
“We had a call we thought we weren’t going to get and then Jeff walks the run in,” Chatham manager John Schiffner said. “But we just didn’t get breaks tonight. We played well and it just didn’t go our way.”
Despite a five-RBI effort from designated hitter Chris Shaw (Boston College), the Anglers (14-19-1) fell 6-5 to Cotuit (16-18-1) at Lowell Park on Tuesday night. Shaw hit a two-run home run in the first before smashing a three-run home run in the fifth, but the Kettleers’ seventh-inning rally — punctuated by Glines’ walk — hampered the lefty’s stellar day.
Rhett Wiseman and John Norwood, Vanderbilt teammates that recently won the College World Series championship, wreaked havoc atop Cotuit’s order. The two combined to go 4-for-7 with two RBIs and five runs scored, including back-to-back home runs off Chatham starter Max Tishman (Wake Forest) in the bottom of the fifth. Tishman gave up five runs on 10 hits in 5.2 innings of work, and it was Gelinas that received the loss.
“Those guys are good players,” Schiffner said, “really good players. They were tough outs for us.”
Before Wiseman and Norwood made lasting imprints on the Anglers’ and Kettleers’ last meeting of the regular season, Shaw dug in. When Chatham visited Lowell Park on July 2 — a game that ended in a 7-2 Anglers win — Shaw hit a towering home run to right. He immediately piggybacked on that performance Tuesday, with a two-run shot to right that scored Mitchell Gunsolus (Gonzaga).
The Kettleers climbed back to tie the score with a two-run bottom of the third, with Wiseman and Norwood both coming in to score. Then Shaw opened up the game with a three-run blast that brought Gunsolus and A.J. Murray (Georgia Tech) home.
And as soon as it connected with Shaw’s bat, his league-leading sixth home run disappeared in the trees behind the right-field wall.
“It’s a pretty good backdrop here and there are trees and stuff,” Shaw said. “There aren’t many distractions when you’re trying to see it so I was able to pick it up really well today.”
But Shaw’s output wasn’t mirrored by his teammates and the Kettleers used the long ball to get back into the game. The frame after Shaw gave the Anglers a three-run lead, Wiseman and Norwood hit home runs on back-to-back pitches and Jamison Fisher tied the game at 5-5 on a single in the sixth. Then Glines’ walk plated who else but Wiseman.
Chahtam collected just six hits in the game, the last of which came from Ty Moore (UCLA) with two outs in the eighth. The Kettleers walked Shaw three times — two of which were intentional while the third may as well have been — to make sure that his effect on the game didn’t extend past the fifth.
The Anglers got the jolt of energy they needed to snap out of what is now a two-week-long funk, but the rest didn’t shake their way.
“I’ve lost games before and I know it happens,” Gunsolus said. “But the last few games we’ve lost we’ve not just played hard but played well. That’s the frustrating thing, that we’ve played well but can’t get it to go our way.”