TRAVERSE CITY — Zach Kometani will be the first to admit he’s been struggling at the plate lately.
But one swing of the bat erased those frustrations as he lined a single into right field that scored Taylor Wrenn from second and gave the Beach Bums a come-from-behind 4-3 win over Florence in 10 innings Tuesday at Wuerfel Park, giving East Division-leading Traverse City two wins in three games against the second-place Freedom.
“I’ve been trying to battle through this little slump here,” said Kometani, who was 0-for-4, including three strikeouts in his previous plate appearances on Tuesday. “Hopefully, that hit there will propel me forward for the rest of the season. I hit it really well. I figured it was going to fall in. It was a low liner. I thought there may be an opportunity for the right fielder to throw (Wrenn) out because it was hit well, but when he bobbled it I knew we were going to score.”
Kometani’s single culminated a Beach Bums rally from a 3-0 deficit in the final four innings. Traverse City plated two runs in the seventh, then tied it in the eighth to send the game into extra innings.
“I thought it was one of our better wins of the year,” said Traverse City manager Gregg Langbehn. “That’s a good team. One of the best, if not the best teams we’ve played all year. It was a hard-fought win. The guys hung in there. That’s why you play nine innings. You just keep going and if you lose you come back tomorrow.”
The Beach Bums 10th inning started when Wrenn led off by being hit by a pitch thrown by Florence closer Jorge Marban, one of the top relievers in the Frontier League. He moved to second when Chase Burch walked with one out. After Carlo Testa fanned, Traverse City’s chance to score was left in the hands of Kometani, who managed to drop his hit in front of Florence right fielder Byron Wiley.