By Maxwell Paul McLaughlin
WAREHAM, M.A. - For the first and only time this year, the Whitecaps had to take the one-hour bus ride over the bridge into Wareham for a date with the Gateman.
The long bus ride did not affect the Whitecaps as they went on to win 3-0 and pick up their third straight victory and second straight shutout. Two big things that helped the Whitecaps to victory were a stellar performance from Harrison Rutkowski (Rutgers) and wearing camo hats during the games.
Let's start by saying it was Harrison Rutkowski’s (Rutgers) world and we were all just living in it. Rutkowski went six innings, struck out nine, only allowed two hits, and did not allow a run.
“I was feeling it in the bullpen and when I went out on the mound it was the same thing,” Rutkowski said. “I started throwing strikes right away and that helped out a lot.
In Rutkowski’s last start he was having a similar outing and then the rain started and the game was canceled leaving Rutkowski anxious for his next start.
“I was frustrated that day because I felt the same as today, I was just happy I picked up right where I left off,” Rutkowski said.
Griffin Green (Virginia Tech) and Hunter Patteson (UCF) came in relief and picked up right where Rutkowski left off.
The first run for the Whitecaps came in the first inning as the struggling Gavin Cross (Virginia Tech) hit a missile over the right-field wall.
“It felt good because I've been working hard on just getting back to the basics and it finally paid off,” Cross said.
The next run came in the top of the fifth when Colin Davis (Wofford) singled up the middle bringing home Alex Freeland (UCF) from second.
The third and final run came in the seventh when Will Simpson hit a double bringing home a run.
“The biggest at-bat of the day was Will’s because of that insurance run,” Manager Jamie Shevchik said.
Now on to the camo hats.
The camo hats were only meant to be worn on Fridays for military appreciation. Well after winning their first game with them on they tried them for a second time. They then tried for a third straight win with the camo hats and they accomplished that goal. So as long as the Whitecaps keep winning these camo hats are here to stay.
“We are riding with these hats until we lose,” Shevchik said.
The Whitecaps (3-2-1) and now in first place in their division will be back in Y-D at 5 pm against the Red Sox who they tied with on the opening day of the season.