BRIDGEWATER– The Somerset Patriots defeated the Newark Bears 9-5 Sunday evening at TD Bank Ballpark in Bridgewater.
Following a two hour and one minute rain delay, Josh Pressley put the Patriots on the scoreboard in the first against Derek Blacksher, who made his second start of the season. After Jeff Nettles single, Pressley deposited his third home run of the series and made it 2-0 Patriots. Blacksher settled down and retired eight straight and 13 of the next 14 batters he faced through five innings of work.
Newark answered back in the visitor’s third off Jason Monti. Tim Raines Jr. and Kennard Jones reached on a walk and single to start the frame. Raines Jr. came around to score on an Elijah Dukes’ fielder choice and throwing error to make a 2-1 game. Dukes plated Raines Jr. in the fifth with a RBI sacrifice fly and the game was tied 2. Carl Everett started the sixth with a double followed by a ground and a Manny Mejia walk to put runners on the corners. Randy Gress reached on a fielder’s choice and a throwing error, which allowed Everett to score, and came home on a Raines’ RBI single and it was 4-2 Newark.
The Patriots catapulted back on top in the sixth, sending 10 batters to the plate and collecting four extra-base hits. Nettles’ two-run homer, Elliott Ayala’s two-run triple and a two-run double by Jason Belcher highlighted the six run, five hit frame to put Somerset up 8-4. Nettles added a solo shot against reliever “Doc” Holliday in the seventh to make it a five run advantage. Newark fought back in the ninth against reliever Carlos Hines, one of six Patriots’ pitchers used on the night. Gress and Jones, who finished 2-for-3 and collected his 995 career hit, each reached on singles with Daryle Ward bringing home Gress with a RBI single. Sandy Madera walked to load the bases and put the tying run at the plate, but reliever Scott Williamson got Carl Everett to line out to right and secured his second save.
Andrew Dobies (1-1) got the win in relief as he tossed one and one-third scoreless innings with two strikeouts. Monti surrendered two unearned runs on five hits, with two strikeouts over five innings of work in a no-decision. Blacksher (1-2) suffered the loss, firing five and two-third innings, allowing seven runs on six hits, with five strikeouts.
Following on off day on Monday, the Bears return home for a short three-game series against the Lancaster Barnstormers beginning on Tuesday, August 17. Game time is set for 11:05 a.m., with the gates of Bears & Eagles Riverfront Stadium opening at 9:00 a.m. In addition to the “Camp Day” festivities, the Bears will host a pre-game Naturalization Ceremony
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