By: Caden Charpentier – Media Operations Coordinator
After the toughest stretch offensively so far this season, the Newport Gulls (8-6) snap their four-game skid, defeating the Keene Swamp Bats (7-8) 14-6 to split the season series. It was the most runs that the Gulls have scored at Cardines Field since June of 2018.
Following a vicious comeback in the top of the eighth inning by the Swamp Bats, the Newport Gulls put seven runs up on the board in the bottom of the inning. Second baseman Trent Farquhar once again put together a masterful performance at the plate and in the field. Farquhar went 4-5 with a solo home run to get things started in the eighth, collected three RBIs, and made a highlight-reel catch in the ninth to help seal the win. It was Farquhar’s second four-hit game of the season, and the first contest in which he had three runs batted in.
Farquhar was not the only bat that contributed to the offensive explosion for the Newport Gulls. Joshua Kuroda-Grauer, and Alec Makarewicz both collected two hits each on the night. That included JKG’s first home run of the season over the centerfield wall in the fourth inning. His two hit night puts him at a team-best 19 hits thus far this season.
Makarewicz extended his hitting streak to five to open the summer. The East Carolina pirate had the hit in the fourth to get it all started for Newport, ripping a double down the right-field line in an inning that resulted in four runs. The Gulls sent 10 batters to the plate.
On the pitching side of things, Newport used a season-high five pitchers to get the job done. Starter Collin Lowe got things started for Newport, going four innings, only allowing two hits, and striking out an astounding seven batters in the process. Lowe’s seven punch-outs on Friday night give him the team lead in that category with 21. Newport would use four different arms in relief of Lowe. Louisville right-hander Seamus Barrett sealed the deal for the Gulls in his third appearance of the season, forcing a ground out to the first baseman to extend the Keene losing streak to three contests.
Five different players for the Gulls had two or more RBIs on the night. Just two players in the Newport lineup against the Swamp Bats did not record an RBI in the box score. A complete team effort from beginning to end for Newport. Spenser Smith collected his first double, and third hit so far this summer while Slate Alford obliterated a no-doubt 400-foot home run to left field in the second inning for the first Gulls’ runs of the night.
After getting back in the win column, the Gulls face another pivotal matchup. On Saturday, Newport will travel to the Shark Tank to take on its division rivals, the Martha’s Vineyard Sharks (8-8). Both the Sharks and the Mystic Schooners sit just one game behind the Gulls for first place in the Coastal Division. Six out of the next seven contests are against divisional foes, and with the new playoff format, collecting as many wins as possible is critical.