In a back and forth offensive battle, Coastal Division rival Mystic (21-17) outlasted Newport (26-13) 13-9 Friday at Cardines Field Newport still leads the season series against the Schooners 4-2 with one more matchup scheduled at Dodd Stadium next Thursday for the final road game of the regular season.

The Gulls collected double-digit hits for a fourth straight game on Friday night. The offense was firing on all cylinders for Newport in front of a packed house on Gulls Fly Together night, with alumni from all six Gulls NECBL Championship teams in attendance.

Five runs in the first inning got things started, followed by another three runs in the fourth. The Gulls offense leads the league in total hits, doubles, total bases, and are just one RBI off from tying the Vermont Mountaineers for the league lead.

Josh Kuroda-Grauer put together one of the best individual performances of the season at the plate despite the loss. The Scarlet Knight went 4-4 with three doubles, to go with four RBIs. His double in the first inning helped the Gulls respond to the Schooners’ two-run top of the inning. He drove the last runner in for Newport in the sixth as Mystic held onto a one-run advantage until the ninth where it ultimately put the contest out of reach with three runs. 

Kuroda-Grauer has double-digit hits in five out of the last seven contests and is now second in the entire NECBL in hits with 49 on the summer. In the last seven days, the Rutgers product has 16 hits to lead the team and possesses a batting average of .485 with a .848 slugging percentage. 

At the top of the order, Michigan State’s Trent Farquhar continued his success at Cardines Field with another sensational day at the plate. Farquhar got on base in five of his six plate appearances, collecting three walks, and two singles.

The second baseman is tied with Colton Ledbetter for the team lead in walks this season with 26 free passes. It is now four straight games with at least one walk for Farquhar on top of collecting a hit in four out of the last five games. 

An NECBL All Star starter, Ledbetter continued his dominance, remaining near the top of most offensive leaderboards across the NECBL. On Friday, Ledbetter went 2-4 with an RBI and a walk. He now has two or more hits in three consecutive games and is leading the league in that category with 52 knocks through just 39 games.

For the second straight day, the Gulls will play at Cardines Field in search of a response against the league leaders, the Vermont Mountaineers (30-9). Vermont has not won at Cardines Field since the end of the 2018 season. First pitch on Volunteer Appreciation and Stars Wars Saturday is at 3:00 pm.