Thursday night the Bourne Braves (24-20-2 overall, 2-0 playoffs) take on the Hyannis Harbor Hawks (26-19-1, 2-0) in Game 1 of the West Division Finals at McKeon Park in Hyannis. Both teams swept their opening round opponents in two straight games and enjoyed a day’s rest Wednesday while waiting for the Orleans Firebirds and Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox matchup to be set.
Hyannis beat Cotuit 10-3 in the first game and then finished the sweep with a 9-5 win over the Kettleers in Game 2.
Game 2 will be played at the home of the Braves, Doran Park, at 6 p.m. on Friday. If necessary, the deciding Game 3 will be played back in Hyannis at 6 p.m.
26-19-1 overall, 2-0 in the playoffs
8-2 (includes playoffs)
Team Playoff Leaders:
- Bobby Melley (Connecticut) — .667 (4-for-6)
- Ryne Birk (Texas A&M) — .625 (5-for-8)
- Tristan Hildebrandt (Cal St Fullerton) — .444 (4-for-9)
Runs batted in:
- Jacob Noll (Florida Gulf Coast) — 4
- Tristan Hildebrandt — 3
- Ryne Birk — 3
Earned run average (regular season):
- Aaron Civale (Northeastern) — 0.36 (1 R / 1 ER / 25 IP)
- Kevin Roy (Columbia) — 0.65 (7 R / 1 ER / 13.2 IP)
- Dakota Hudson (Mississippi State) — (15 R / 8 ER / 42.2 IP)
Bourne faced off against the best-in-the-West Harbor Hawks six times in the regular season. Here’s how the Braves fared:
Bourne won 4-2 after the teams traded two runs in the first inning. The game remained locked at 2-2 until the fourth inning when Nick Solak (Louisville) delivered a two-run, two-out triple in the bottom of the seventh to right field. Solak’s extra-base hit turned the tide and Cody Sedlock (Illinois) was awarded the win after pitching two hitless innings in relief.
In the second time to two team’s squared off, Ryan Smoyer (Notre Dame) tossed 6.0 innings of scoreless baseball in the best of his three appearances this season, allowing only four hits. Reid Humphreys (Mississippi State) added a pair of hits and two RBIs to aid Bourne’s 3-0 win. Smoyer has since returned home but his performance would be remembered.
Sedlock made his first start of the summer against Hyannis on July 11th and he delivered 5.2 innings, gave up five hits, one earned run, two walks and struck out one. Doug Norman (LSU), Bryan Baker (North Florida) and Austin Conway (Indiana State) combined for 3.1 shutout innings out of the bullpen. Most of the team’s runs came in a three-run seventh inning.
Peter Alonso (Florida) hit an RBI-single in the sixth inning to ignite a Braves offense that had struggled hitting with runners on base entering the game. Bourne went on to notch an additional two runs in that inning to beat first-place Hyannis 3-2.
In Bourne’s only loss on the season to Hyannis, it appeared that the Harbor Hawks would run away with the ball game after collecting 18 hits and seven runs through the first seven frames. But the Braves would rally back with a five-run eighth inning before ultimately falling short in a 7-6 loss to Hyannis.
In the final matchup of the regular season, the Braves walked off at Doran Park in a 3-2 win. Reid Humphreys singled to provide the decisive blow in the bottom of the ninth after Alex Robles went seven innings in the start of his summer in a no-decision.
Liam Sullivan is the beat writer for the Bourne Braves and is currently an undergraduate at Syracuse University. Follow Liam on Twitter @Liam_Sullivan_ or @BourneBraves. He can also be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Photo by: Troy Lynch