From the things that are not surprising department, the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox are still alive.
After dropping game one of the Cape League championship series to Falmouth Thursday, the Red Sox hit three home runs and six extra-base hits in mashing their way to a 9-4 win and a series tie Friday afternoon.
For the second year in a row, the Red Sox have forced a decisive game three. Falmouth will host it tonight at 6 p.m.
With the wind blowing out at the already hitter-friendly Red Wilson Field Friday, home runs were a safe bet, and the Red Sox didn’t waste any time paying up. Will Toffey (Vanderbilt) hit a laser line drive homer to left-center in the first – a two-run shot – and Deon Stafford (St. Joseph’s) went back-to-back with a solo homer, staking Y-D to a 3-0 lead.
Falmouth got a run back in the second and another in the third, but the rallies were marked more by missed opportunities and Y-D escapes. With two outs and the bases loaded in the second, Michael Gigliotti (Lipscomb) stung a line drive to center and Corey Dempster (USC) made a full-extension diving catch.
With runners on second and third and only one out in the third, Tyler Lawrence (Murray State) hit a sharp line drive to third. Will Toffey caught it then dove to touch third base with his glove, doubling up J.J. Matijevic (Arizona).
The Red Sox then added to their lead on a two-run double by Matt Winaker (Stanford) in the third and a Kevin Smith (Maryland) two-run homer in the fourth.
Jared Janczak (TCU), after battling through the second and third innings, ended up going five strong, allowing one earned run for the win.
Falmouth showed a little life with two home runs of its own in the seventh – by Matijevic and Tristan Gray (Rice) – but one more time, the meat of Y-D’s order came through. Deon Stafford had an RBI double in the bottom of the seventh and Brendan Skidmore (Binghamton) plated him with a sacrifice fly.
Falmouth got the lead runner on in the eighth and ninth innings, but both were erased on double plays as Sam Delaplane (Eastern Michigan) finished out the win.
Y-D’s 3-4-5 hitters – Smith, Toffey and Stafford – went a combined 7-for-12 with three home runs, seven runs scored and five RBI. For the playoffs, the lowest batting average among them is .375. Falmouth will have to find a way to get through that murderer’s row in game three.
So it all comes down to this. Falmouth chasing its first title since 1980. Y-D looking for its third straight.
Time for a championship.