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Falmouth, Mass. — John Schiffner stood at the top of the dugout at Falmouth’s Guv Fuller Field, staring concernedly onto the diamond where his team currently trailed 2-0. It was the first inning.
“I was a little disappointed,” said Schiffner. “I thought we should have won last night’s game. I thought we didn’t execute, and I saw us go down 2-0 and I thought ‘this is not looking good.’”
However, the Anglers battled back, stringing together five runs on nine hits to upend the Falmouth Commodores 5-2 in a rematch of last Friday’s opening day loss.
Falmouth jumped out to an early lead after the Anglers’ starting pitcher, Tanner Chock, allowed a single and a double to start the game. The Commodores punished Chock for his early woes when Michael Gigliotti stroked a two-run single into the outfield.
Though Chock gave up four consecutive hits to start the game, the right-hander settled down, allowing only one other after the first inning. When he was lifted at the end of the fifth in favor of Jason Foley, Chock had struck out four and walked one.
Schiffner credited former Angler and current Presbyterian pitching coach Parker Bangs for connecting the right-hander with Chatham.
“[Bangs] called and said ‘Coach I think this kid [Chock] can pitch in the Cape Cod League.,’” said Schiffner. “So we took him as a temp and it’s been a great acquisition. Great recommendation on Parker’s part.”
Chock attributed his success tonight to his confidence that Chatham’s offense would be able to make up for the two runs he let up early on. The pitcher also credited the win to his ability to hit the strike zone early in counts.
Schiffner detailed the possibility that this start would be the last for Chock, as the junior is rapidly approaching his 100-inning limit for the 2016 spring and summer.
The Anglers began their comeback in the fourth inning with a Sean Bouchard single. The UCLA Bruin reached scoring position following a Gunnar Troutwine walk and was brought home on a single by Kyle Adams.
Chase Pinder would pull Chatham even with Falmouth just one batter later, singling in Troutwine from second.
An inning later Chatham started off the frame when Jake Palomaki reached base on a single. A fielder’s choice by Patrick Mathis and a hit by Bouchard loaded the bases for Donovan Casey with a chance to take the lead. Casey succeeded with help from the Falmouth defense.
The Boston College product smacked a groundball to second base, where a transfer error by Kevin Merrell prevented the Commodores from ending the inning on a double play, allowing Palomaki to cross the plate with the Angler lead.
The Anglers would tack on two more runs in the ninth; Pinder and Palomaki scored key insurance runs off of RBIs from Artis and Mathis respectively.
Palomaki, an infielder from Boston College, has been hot recently and continues to find ways to get on base for Chatham. In all three games that he’s suited up for the Anglers, the second baseman has gone 5-for-13 with two walks and three runs scored.
Chatham’s relievers continued the trend set by Chock, allowing just one runner to reach third base the entirety of the night. The bullpen’s ability to limit base runners was especially encouraging after their walks trouble in Bourne and Brewster earlier this week.
Rallying from a 2-0 deficit a day after losing a hard fought game in extra innings, the Anglers exemplified their resiliency through their continuous strong play in the face of an early two-run hole.
“We executed, we played situational baseball, we got great pitching, and we got adequate defense,” said Schiffner. “Good baseball game.”
The Chatham bullpen pitched strongly, allowing no runs on three hits. Justin Foley and Moises Ceja combined for five strikeouts. Ceja earned the save just two days after playing a part in a disastrous six-run inning against Bourne.
After five road games in the past seven days, the Anglers will return home to Veterans Field on Sunday where they will play host to the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox at 7 p.m. Chatham will then get back on the bus the following day as the face off against the Wareham Gatemen at 6:30 p.m. Anglers Extra Pregame starts at 6:10 p.m. on the Cape Cod Baseball Network.