CAPE LEAGUE PLAYOFFS: Hyannis Ousts Cotuit, Hildebrandt Leads Way (VIDEO)

COTUIT — In spite of a valiant late-innings effort and in front of its largest crowd of the season, the Cotuit Kettleers (17-29) wrapped up its 2015 campaign last night at Elizabeth Lowell Park, falling to the Hyannis Harbor Hawks, 9-5, in the finale of the Cape Cod Baseball League playoffs first round.

Cal-State Fullerton's Tristan Hildebrandt had plenty to smile about Tuesday night as he rapped out four hits and drove in three runs to pace the Hyannis Harbor Hawks to a 9-5 win over Cotuit. Sean Walsh/Capecod.com Sports

Cal-State Fullerton’s Tristan Hildebrandt had plenty to smile about Tuesday night as he rapped out four hits and drove in three runs to pace the Hyannis Harbor Hawks to a 9-5 win over Cotuit.
Sean Walsh/Capecod.com Sports

Not unlike the evening before, the outcome of this one was never really in question as the West Division champion Hyannis Harbor Hawks (26-19-1) built a 7-1 lead after the game’s first three innings, highlighted by a two-out, four-run rally in the top of the third inning.

That four-run rally was led off by a walk issued to Texas A&M’s Ryne Birk, followed by a Tristan Hildebrandt (Cal-State Fullerton) RBI-double, a walk to Corey Bird (Marshall), an Austin Hays’ (Jacksonville) two-run double and a Bobby Melley (UConn) RBI-single.

It was Hildrebrandt’s bat that proved unbeatable Tuesday night as the sweet-swinging shortstop went 4-5 on the night with three RBI to pace the Harbor Hawk’s 12-hit barrage. Birk also belted his second home run in as many days to give the ‘Hawks an added boost of self-confidence.

Mississippi State southpaw Vance Tatum – who started the game – took home the win as his Harbor Hawks eliminated Cotuit from postseason contention with a two-game sweep. Tatum struck out two in five innings of work and allowed two earned runs on four hits and four walks.

Cotuit did not end its season without a fight, however, as the host Kettleers put up one run in the bottom of the eighth inning and two more in the ninth.

Boston College righty reliever Justin Dunn gave up no run in two innings of work in the season finale for the host Cotuit Kettleers. Sean Walsh/Capecod.com Sports

Boston College righty reliever Justin Dunn gave up no run in two innings of work in the season finale for the host Cotuit Kettleers.
Sean Walsh/Capecod.com Sports

Shortstop Michael Paez (Coastal Carolina) ended the season on a particularly strong note for Cotuit, as he went 4-5 with two RBI.

Wofford College’s Matt Milburn took the loss. He went 1.1 innings and allowed two earned runs on three hits and three walks. All totaled, both teams combined for 25 hits.

Hyannis will likely face Bourne tonight as the next round of the playoffs begins.

Troy University righty reliever Marc Skinner could have been deemed the most effective of the Harbor Hawks’ four pitchers on the night. He turned in two shutout innings and struck out three.

Hyannis will face Bourne on Thursday at McKeon Park for the first game of a best-of-three-game series to decided the divisional playoff champion. The game will begin at 6:00 pm.

— Written by Sean Walsh, sports editor for www.capecod.com. His email is seanwalsh@ccb-media.com. Follow him on Twitter @coachwalshccbm

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