BRIDGEWATER, NJ - The Somerset Patriots (15-6) split Thursday night’s twin bill against the New Hampshire Fisher Cats (8-13). New Hampshire won an extra-inning ballgame 10-8 in game one before the Patriots took game two by the score of 2-1.
In the opener, the Patriots plated four in the bottom of the first to take an early 4-2 lead. Dermis Garcia’s two-run home run (7) and RBI from Isiah Gilliam and Matt Pita helped answer a pair of Fisher Cat runs in the top of the first.
Glenn Otto recovered quickly from the first-inning two-run home run by Jordan Groshans (1). The righty went on to throw 4.2 scoreless innings with seven strikeouts without giving up any additional runs.
The game remained tied until the Fisher Cats got a two-out, two-run double from L.J. Talley in the top of the seventh to send the game into extras.
With the game still tied at 4-4, New Hampshire plated three runs in the top of the ninth to take a 7-4 lead. The Patriots answered with back-to-back blasts in the bottom half of the frame by Oswaldo Cabrera (3) and Michael Beltre (2).
The back-and-forth continued until the Cats edged out the Patriots after Jefry Valdez (L, 0-1) allowed two runs in the 11th inning that went unanswered.
Joe Harris (1-2) picked up the win with a scoreless 1.1 innings pitched.
“The first game was a battle. We kept playing hard, but came up just short,” said Patriots manager Julio Mosquera. “One thing about our players, they play hard until the last out.”
While the first game was an offensive show, game two settled in as a pitchers’ duel.
Luis Gil (W,1-0) allowed a run on two hits while striking out eight through his six innings of work to earn his first win in Somerset.
“Gil did a very good job tonight, specifically having to wait so long for the start of the second game,” Mosquera added. “He utilized his pitches well and gave us some length. He attacked hitters, fell behind early, but that didn’t faze him. He kept his composure and gave us a chance.”
The Patriots plated two runs off of RBI singles by Oliver Dunn and Aaron Palensky to take the lead in the bottom of the sixth inning.
Stephen Ridings (S,1) came in to close out New Hampshire and recorded his first save this season.
Brody Rodning (L, 0-3) suffered the loss after he allowed two earned runs in an inning pitched.
The Patriots and the Fisher Cats face off again Friday night at TD Bank Ballpark with the first pitch scheduled for 7:05 p,m.