BREWER, Maine — Each game in Saturday’s baseball doubleheader between Katahdin of Stacyville and Deer Isle-Stonington was won the same way, by a different team.
After starting pitcher Joe Condon led his Mariners to a 3-2 nine-inning victory with both a gutsy effort on the mound and the game-winning hit, Cody Cunningham did the same for his Cougars as Katahdin rallied for a 4-2 win at a bright and blustery Heddericg Field.
In the first game, Condon was hit by a pitch in the first inning, but despite feeling his shoulder pop, he stayed in and earned a complete-game, extra-inning victory.
Condon worked out of several jams early on. After scoring a run in the first on one hit and two Mariners errors and leaving two runners on, the Cougars stranded a runner at third in the second and left the bases loaded in the third. Condon’s pitch count in the first three innings was 65.
“My arm didn’t feel right. My shoulder popped out when their guy hit me, so I guess it just sat back in place,” he said. “I guess I just needed to stretch it out a little bit.”
Condon got a 1-2-3 inning in the fourth and Katahdin had just four baserunners the rest of the way.
“My fastball and curve worked the best, and the location was most important,” Condon said.
Condon threw 145 pitches while allowing three hits and six walks. He also struck out eight batters to improve to 2-1.
“He threw a great game and showed great composure. Nothing bothered him,” said Katahdin coach Marty McCarthy, whose Cougars are now 6-2.
Oh, and Condon hit a game-winning RBI double, too.
After Joe Carter drew a leadoff walk on four pitches in the bottom of the ninth, Condon jumped all over a 1-2 fastball from Katahdin starter Brandon Robinson (126 pitches, six hits, two walks and 12 strikeouts) and drove a liner into right field to score Carter all the way from first.
“His slider was working really well. It gave us a lot of trouble,” Condon said. “I was sitting fastball and it was right down the middle, too.”
Katahdin had broken a 1-1 tie in the eighth after a one-out fielder’s choice and error left runners at first and third. Billy Livesey made it 2-1 with a sacrifice fly to right.
Deer Isle-Stonington retied it in the bottom of the inning after Jay Boyce was hit by a pitch with one out, stole second and then scored on Evan Rollins’ single to right-center.
In the second game, Cunningham took center stage as he baffled the Mariners with a two-pitch attack and good location. He also drove home the tying run in the bottom of the fourth with a two-out single to right-center.
Cunningham (1-1) threw 106 pitches for a five-hitter.
“I liked his mound presence. He didn’t let anything bother him,” said McCarthy. “Those kids call the pitches, so I liked the way he kept batters off balance, going in and out all game.
“They were moving all over the box trying to find a place he was going to throw the ball, so that tells me they were uncomfortable back there.”
He walked just one batter and struck out 12.
“I felt I had a lot more command as the game went on,” Cunningham said. “My best pitch was the two-seam fastball with a curveball following it. I had a lot of placement and kept moving it around. My catcher did a great job with that. They’re a fastball hitting team.
The Mariners scored one in the first and fourth to go up 2-0, but Katahdin tied it with a two-out rally in the fourth as Kolby Gallagher preceded Cunningham’s RBI single with an RBI double to left-center.
Katahdin added two more in the sixth on a hit batter, a Gallagher single, an outfield fielding error and Brady McNally’s sacrifice fly to center.
“I think if either one of us had lost both games, it would be tough for us to crawl into the playoffs,” said McCarthy.