A pitcher's duel in Wilmington lasted just 2 hours and 20 minutes between the Sharks and the Steamers. Breydan Gorham pitched a gem for the Sharks en route to Wilmington's first shutout win of the season.
In the bottom of the first, Justin Dean reached base on a fielding error by the second baseman Connor Kopach. After groundouts by Michael Sandle and Luke Morgan, Dean stood 90 feet from the plate at third. Trevor McCutchin then laced a single through the right side to drive in his 32nd run of the season.
From there, Breydan Gorham took the ball and dominated for the Sharks on the mound. Through 5 innings, the sophomore from UNC-Wilmington faced the minimum 15 batters, allowing 1 hit, striking out 5. Meanwhile, the Sharks batters were held silent as well by Edenton. Wilmington had just 4 hits in the contest, 3 in the first two innings and then one more in the 8th.
In the 6th, 8th and 9th innings the Steamers had a runner reach second base, but each time Gorham left the runner stranded. In the 8th, James Battley singled to lead off the inning and then stole second with nobody out. Gorham struck out the next three batters, all swinging, to get out of the jam.
Wilmington tacked on an insurance run in the bottom of the 8th. Justin Dean singled to lead off the inning. Then, Michael Sandle's popped up on a failed bunt attempt to the third baseman Tristan Carranza. Tying to double up Justin Dean, Carranza threw then ball away into right field. With Dean rounding second, James Battley's throw went over Kelvan Pilot's head covering third base allowing Dean to score. Both of the Sharks runs in the contest were unearned.
Later in the 8th, Luke Morgan lined out to second base to end his 21 game hitting streak. However, after being hit by a pitch in the 6th, Morgan's on base streak extends to 30 straight.
In the 9th, Breydan Gorham added two more strikeouts to his tally, the final one looking to end the contest.
Gorham's final line was 9 innings, 3 hits, 0 runs, 12 strikeouts to improve to 4-1 on the season. John Arel (0-1) lost for the Steamers.
The 2-0 victory was the first time the Sharks held an opponent scoreless. The shutout win comes a night after Wilmington was shutout for the first time in a 9-0 loss at Fayetteville last night. Breydan Gorham's 12 strikeouts were the most by a Sharks pitcher this season.
Wilmington heads into the All-Star Break 18-17 overall and 5-2 in the 2nd half.