Marietta knocks off undefeated Cambridge, 7-3
CAMBRIDGE — Behind seven strong innings on the mound from Malachi Morton, the Marietta Tigers knocked off the previously unbeaten Cambridge Bobcats 7-3 Wednesday at Don Coss Field.
The Tigers pounded out nine hits and took advantage of four Bobcat errors in the fourth inning to come from behind to pick up a nice road win.
The Tigers struck first in the third inning as Josh Martin stroked a one-out single to left field. Adam Coil beat out an infield single to shortstop and both runners moved up on a wild pitch. Donavon Wheeler got the first of his two RBIs with an infield groundout to make it 1-0 Marietta. The lead was short lived as Cambridge quickly answered by plating three runs in the bottom of the inning. Caden Whaley doubled home Bryce Murdock and Sean Perkins to give Cambridge the lead at 2-1. Whaley scored after a pair of Tiger errors to make it 3-1.
It was then that the moxy of Morton showed as he struck out Jake Valentine and popped up Caleb Bond to end the inning. It proved to be Cambridge’s only threat against the crafty Morton as three of their four hits were in the inning.
“Mal threw strikes, he gained confidence as the game went along. He just did an awesome job,” said Tiger head coach Josh McKitrick.
The Tigers were back on the prowl in the fourth as Chandler Goddard led off with a single and John Berry Wharff drew a walk. After a failed sacrifice bunt, Morton reached on an error to load the bases.
Mark Duckworth singled home Wharff to make it 3-2 and then McKitrick confidently called for a suicide squeeze with Martin at the plate. The pitch was in the dirt and Aiden Herb rolled over a collision at the plate to tie the game at 3-3.
Coil and Wheeler both reached on infield errors as Morton and Duckworth scored to make it 5-3 Marietta.
The Tigers added some insurance runs in the sixth as Duckworth doubled to deep right to lead off the inning. Martin, Coil and Wheeler followed with singles to make it 7-3 Marietta.
“We kept the pressure on Cambridge all night. I know we left 10 guys on base, but it shows we had good at-bats,” said McKitrick. “This team was 7-0 going into tonight, and they are used to winning at home. We did well”.
Morton calmly held the potent Bobcat offense in check as he went all seven innings on only 79 pitchers. The Tiger junior walked two and struck out one, giving up only four hits and one earned run.
“He located his curveball and he had them off balance tonight,” said Mckitrick.
Marietta improved to 5-3 and will return to Legion Field on Friday to take on the Eastern Eagles with a 5 p.m. start.