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Dandeneau's Clutch Relief, Chaumette's Big Night at the Plate Push Bay Sox to 5-3 Win over Waves

July 4, 2018 - New England Collegiate Baseball League (NECBL) - New Bedford Bay Sox News Release

Rafe Chaumette (Trinity) had three hits in front of his family, and C.J. Dandeneau (UConn) saved the day with five strikeouts in two tense innings of relief, as the New Bedford Bay Sox inched closer to first place with a 5-3 win over the Ocean State Waves on Tuesday night.

Chaumette was 3-for-4 with two singles and a double, which pushed his hitting streak to seven games and put him over the .400 mark for the season. Dandeneau came in with the bases loaded in the eighth inning, but stranded all three runners, and two more in the ninth, to give the Bay Sox their second straight dramatic victory. Dandeneau saved the game for starter Buddy Hayward (Harvard), who was exceptional on the mound to earn his second win of the season.

New Bedford rallied for five runs in the final inning of the second game of Sunday's doubleheader in Plymouth, and Tuesday's combination of a Bay Sox win and a Pilgrims loss put NB (13-10) just a game behind Plymouth (13-8) for first place in the Southern Division. Mystic (13-9) sits between the two squads in the tight division. After having the Fourth of July off, the Bay Sox will battle with the Schooners in Mystic on Thursday in another huge matchup.

After both teams stranded a runner by grounding into inning-ending double plays in the first, the Waves promptly struck for the first runs of the game. Ocean State wasted little time once the second began, striking three straight singles on the first pitch of at-bats, as Hayward was consistently throwing strikes. An 0-2 count didn't stop Ocean State's Casey Dana from ripping a single to left field that plated two runners, but Hayward buckled down and eventually stranded three runners while picking up two strikeouts.

As they have done all season long, the Bay Sox responded right away, with Ryan Markey (St. John's) blasting his second home run of the season which brought home Austin Markmann (Sacred Heart) and tied the game at 2-2. Markmann reached with one out, as he was hit by a pitch from Waves' starter Nick Robinson, and Markey cleared one out of Paul Walsh Field with two down for New Bedford's 11th dinger of the season.

New Bedford took the lead in the bottom of the third, as a well-struck ball to deep right-center field by Andrew Rapoza (Barry) was dropped after a lengthy dart by outfielder Brian Moskey. Rapoza ended up on third base and Chandler Debrosse, who lead off with a four-pitch walk and earned his eighth stolen base, scored for the home team's first lead of the night.

Debrosse dazzled in the field in the fifth inning, as he made a fantastic play on a grounder between first and second base by Cullen Smith. Debrosse ranged to his left, then spun and fired to first baseman Karsten Sherman (Keiser), who picked the throw for the first out. Another close play at first, with Sherman making another nice scoop on a throw from Jack Winkler (San Francisco), prevented the tying run to cross the plate.

The Bay Sox left the bases loaded in the fourth, but added to their lead in the fifth, with Rapoza scoring on an RBI double to deep center by Chaumette to give New Bedford a 4-2 lead. Chaumette has been on fire as of late, as he has 14 hits during his current hitting streak to vault the junior to a team-leading .404 average.

After the rocky second inning, Hayward was exceptional, as he retired the last nine batters that he faced and went seven strong innings. Noah Stern (Barry) took over on the hill in the eighth, but things turned for the worse right away. Stern allowed a single, then thought he had picked up the first out of the inning when Michael Turner flew out to center, but the Bay Sox were called for catcher's interference, placing runners on first and second. Moskey earned his second bunt single of the night to load the bases, and Stern walked Garrett Hodges to give Mystic their third run of the night.

Stern was Dandeneau, who led the Bay Sox with a 1.31 ERA and four saves entering Tuesday night. Dandeneau left all three ducks on the pond, with two huge strikeouts and a pop out to third to end the threat.

The Bay Sox added insurance in the bottom of the eighth, as an errant throw from shortstop Quincy McAfee allowed pinch-runner Elijah Brown (Sacred Heart) to score for a two-run lead. Dandeneau made things interesting in the ninth, allowing a walk and a single that eventually put two runners in scoring position, but finished with two more Ks - and five in just two innings of work - to earn his fifth save of the season.

After facing the Schooners on Thursday on the road, New Bedford will travel to Upper Valley on Friday before returning to Paul Walsh Field for another matchup with the Waves on Saturday night.

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