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One week ago, the Chatham Anglers (15-12-2) traveled to South Yarmouth to take on the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox (17-8-4) after winning the night before against the Harwich Mariners. Chatham scored the first run of the game, but a nine-run fourth inning for Y-D was the knockout punch in a 10-1 victory.
Now, after an 8-3 win over the Mariners on Saturday, the Anglers will look to keep history from repeating itself as they match up against the Red Sox.
The two Eastern Division rivals each have one win, one loss and one tie against each other on the year. Chatham’s victory — a 5-2 win highlighted by home runs from Tristin English (Georgia Tech) and Drew Mendoza (Florida State) — came on June 29.
In its victory Saturday over Harwich, Chatham had five players go for multi-hit games, including Colin Simpson (Oklahoma State). Simpson has been arguably the hottest hitter on the team over the last week, going 9-for-19 over the last five games.
Saturday, the rising senior went 3-for-4 with three runs scored. Simpson cracked a triple in the fifth inning that electrified the Chatham fans that made the seven-mile journey to Whitehouse Field. Simpson — who struggled for the first month of the season — said he has been swinging at better pitches recently.
“Since I've been here, I've been making minor adjustments to everything,” Simpson said. “I finally feel everything is right again. Everything’s clicking again like it used to in the spring season.”
Blake Sabol (Southern California) and Drew Mendoza (Florida State) also continued their success at the plate. Sabol had two hits, including a second-inning solo-shot to right field. Mendoza also roped two singles and scored two runs.
On the mound, Alek Manoah was electric. The 6’7” right-hander went a season-high six innings and struck out 11 Harwich hitters — one off the CCBL season-high of 12 punch outs. In four of Manoah’s six frames, he faced the minimum three batters.
“I’m just trying to come in and attack with the fastball and get some swings, get ahead of some counts,” Manoah said. “Then just play with them with the offspeed, once I’m in a rhythm I can start throwing offspeed for strikes and start blowing their doors off.”
John McMillon (Texas Tech) replaced Manoah in the seventh and ran into some trouble. After allowing a walk, a double and then two more walks to start the frame, the two-way player bunkered down and struck out the side to hold the damage at one run.
The Red Sox accumulated 17 hits in their 7-2 victory over Brewster on Saturday. Patrick Bailey (NC State) led the way with three hits, including a two-run homer in the bottom of the sixth. Andrew Daschbach (Stanford) added two hits and two walks and Noah Campbell (South Carolina) hit a home run in the second inning.
Y-D currently leads the Eastern Division with a league-high 38 points, while Chatham sits in second-place with 32 points. Both teams come into Sunday’s contest riding three-game win streaks.