Harwich outlasts Falmouth, 4-1

Mariners back in win column

The Harwich Mariners got back in the win column on Friday night, defeating the Falmouth Commodores for the second time this week. A dominant pitching performance from starter Haiden Leffew and strong work out of the bullpen from Colton Shaw and Justin Mitrovich gave the Mariners an easy path to a 4-1 victory.

The story of the night begins and ends with the Harwich pitching staff, which struck out 10 batters and only allowed six base hits, most of which were dispersed between innings, which limited any real threat.

Haiden Leffew was almost unhittable in his 5 1/3 innings of work, only allowing two base hits while fanning eight Commodore batters.

Leffew commanded the zone and his changeup was far and away his best pitch of the night. He consistently used it in payoff pitches to send Falmouth batters walking back to the dugout.

"[Leffew]'s outing was tremendous, he was pumping the strike zone all night, that was good for him," Harwich manager Steve Englert said. "That was his best outing so far. I think he's probably gotten his feet wet, he's touched the mound a few times and he's getting comfortable.

Leffew came one pitch away from completing one of the most rare feats in the sport, that being an immaculate inning.

After fanning the first two batters of the second inning on three pitches each, Falmouth catcher Karson Bowen came up to bat as Leffew looked to complete the miracle.

On the first pitch, Bowen hit a pop fly just over the Mariners dugout on the third base line, and then a called strike two on a breaking ball left Leffew one pitch away. Trying to get Bowen to chase a pitch out of the zone, Leffew sent in a high fastball that Bowen spit on, ending the bid.

Despite losing his immaculate inning bid, Leffew kept the Commodores off the board until he was relieved in the sixth inning.

"I think that kid's got a pretty good future ahead of him, and I think he's getting better and better every time he comes out here, so if he continues that, he'll have a good summer," Englert said.

Colton Shaw impressed in his first CCBL appearance, inheriting two runners left on from Leffew in the sixth with just one out. Shaw promptly struck out his next opponent, and then induced a groundout to keep the Commodores off the board.

Harwich benefitted from a throwing error in the first inning that allowed two runs to come around, but the loudest offensive strike of the night came from the bat of Michael Anderson.

Anderson hit his league-leading fourth home run of the summer in the sixth inning, a solo shot that advanced the Harwich lead to 3-0 at the time.

After starting the summer off on fire, Anderson had a couple of off games, but seemed to get back on track Friday night with his moonshot home run.

"He's a good hitter, hitters are going to hit," Englert said. "He has an approach, and he's an even-keeled guy, and he's going to get his knocks. He's a good hitter, you can't keep a good hitter down."

Harwich is back in action Saturday night when it is back at home to take on Orleans for the second time this season. First pitch at Whitehouse Field is scheduled for 5:30 p.m.