Highlanders rally to beat Brewhas

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The defending men’s Island Softball League (ISL) champion Highlanders stayed at the top of the league standings with a 6-2 win over the Brewhas, Monday night at Veterans Memorial Park in Vineyard Haven.

The game was a defensive stalemate through four innings, with the Highlanders clinging to a 1-0 lead after Matt Kurth batted in Mike O’Donaghue in the first. 

Highlanders pitcher Danny Merry took a perfect game into the bottom of the fifth, but Tom Benedict broke it up with a leadoff single. Derek Chrebet and Matt Gebo drew walks to load the bases, and Tim Millerick tied the game with a well-hit sacrifice to center. Lamar Moreis followed with a single, and the Brewhas led 2-1 after five.

The Highlanders returned the favor with two runs in the top half of the sixth. Todd Hitchings and John Mazza singled, Matt Kurth hit an RBI-triple off the fence in center field, and Kyp Cooperrider singled to score Kurth for a 3-2 Highlanders lead.

The champs saved their best inning for last, with three more runs in the seventh. Pitcher Merry, who finished with a three-hitter, placed an RBI double just inside the right field line, and Todd Hitchings added another two-bagger for the Highlanders, who improved to 7-1 on the season. The Brewhas fell to 3-5.