Mashpee Falcons Rise Again, Eliminate Cohasset Skippers; Nauset Advances

MASHPEE – The Mashpee High baseball team (17-7)  didn’t put together its finest defensive effort of the season in Monday’s Div. 4 South Sectional quarterfinal match-up with Cohasset (13-8), but the Falcons’ defense was still sharper than the Skippers.

Mashpee High School's Pat Madden paced the Falcons to the school's first-ever quarterfinals victory as they beat the Cohasset Skippers, 7-5. Phil Garceau/ Sports

Mashpee High School’s Pat Madden paced the Falcons to the school’s first-ever quarterfinals victory as they beat the Cohasset Skippers, 7-5.
Phil Garceau/ Sports

Three Mashpee runs were a direct result of Cohasset defensive miscues, as the #6 seed Falcons earned their first-ever sectional semifinal appearance with a 7-5 victory over the # 14 Skippers.

“Defensively, we have to tighten up a little more,” Mashpee coach Dan Patenaude said. “But we turned some big double plays to help us out.”

The sixth-seeded Falcons (17-7) advance to the sectional semifinals with the victory, where they will face # 10 seed Abington High (15-7) at a time and date yet to be determined. That game will be played at a neutral site, which is also to be announced.

Mashpee’s Pat Madden nearly went the distance in the victory, but he was pulled with two outs in the seventh after the Skippers’ Alec Norton laced a two-out RBI triple to center field.

With the tying run at the plate, Patenaude brought in staff ace Jason Demers to close the game, requiring just two pitches to retire Xander Schubert.

“Both [Madden] and Jason have been great all year,” Patenaude said “They aren’t overly emotional and Patrick gets a upset sometimes but he gets right back into it as does Jason, so we couldn’t have a better situation.”

Madden finished with eight hits and three earned runs allowed and he struck out four.

After Cohasset’s Michael Cohan led off the game by reaching on an error, the Skippers pushed across two runs in the opening frame and sent Mashpee into an early deficit.

But Madden settled down the rest of the way to keep the Skippers’ offense at bay.

With Mashpee holding a 5-3 lead in the top of the fourth, Madden retired South Shore League (Small) MVP Brett Dooley to escape the jam on a full count fastball.

“It was a close game the whole way through, there were no gimmies at all today,” Patenaude explained. “The umpire was consistent today, not giving the outside corner but he was consistent and that’s all we can ask for.“

Trailing 2-0 early, the Falcons offense didn’t take long to get back into the game, getting one back in the bottom of the first on Alex Morry’s RBI triple to center field that scored Ari Purdy.

Drew Ridenour tied the game in the second when he ripped an RBI-double to center, allowing Mike Fraser, who reached base on an error, to score from second. Two batters later, Zach Landry gave the Falcons the lead when he plated Ridenour with a hot shot to second base that was muffed.

“These kid have battled all year long, they are not intimidated by being down,” Patenaude said. “We’ve been up by big scores too and let things go, but they were focused and we knew 2-0 wasn’t going to win or lose this ballgame.”

Mashpee tacked on two more in the bottom of the third inning beginning when Fraser sent a screaming line drive down the third base line to plate Nick Carpenter. Fraser came around to score when the third basemen mishandled a batted ball off the bat of Ridenour to take a 5-2 lead.

Mashpee added two important insurance runs in the bottom of the fifth inning when James Murphy hit a sacrifice fly to right field — Morry scored easily from third, and Fraser quickly followed when the scampered home on an over throw.

“James Murphy on a 1-2 pitch goes the other way and that was the game-winner,” Patenaude said. “They like to play, their motto is ‘One team, one family’ and they believe in that too.”

Nauset Warriors Move on with Shutout of Dighton-Rehoboth

The #3 seed Nauset Regional High School baseball team will advance to the Division 2 South Sectional semifinals this week against #2 seed Middleboro after the Warriors eliminated #6 seed Dighton-Rehoboth Monday afternoon, 3-0.

Righty Gerritt Merrill, the usual starting shortstop for the Warriors, turned in a complete-game performance and struck out six batters for the win.

Leftfielder Trevor Ridley and catcher Mason Swift provided all the run support Merrill would need with RBI-basehits.

Nauset will face Middleboro at a neutral site in the semifinals. Both teams are 18-4.

— Story written by contributing sportswriter Phil Garceau. Follow him on Twitter @pcgarceau. Edited by Sports Editor Sean Walsh.

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