Matt Potok had the SwampBats’ number Thursday night.
After about an hour rain delay, Potok went on to throw eight scoreless innings as the North Shore Navigators beat Keene, 5-0, at Alumni Field. He finished with 11 strikeouts and at one point sat down 13 consecutive hitters.
North Shore scored three of their five runs on sacrifice flies, and all five hitters that came around to score reached base on either a walk or an error. Stan DeMartinis had two RBIs for the Navigators — a sac fly in the second inning and an RBI single in the eighth.
Keene finished with only three hits — a single from Jackson Ross in the first inning, then singles from Colin Wetterau and Ethan Brown in the eighth.
“We had one hit through seven innings,” said Keene manager Shaun McKenna. “[Potok] pitched well, you have to hand it to him. I don’t think it was overpowering, we just didn’t hit the ball.”
Grant Besser pitched the first two innings before John Mikolaicyk took over in the third and pitched the next three scoreless innings, only giving up two hits. Parker Murphy pitched the sixth inning, Cason Henry threw the seventh and eighth, and Erry Baldayac finished things off in the ninth.
“I thought our pitching was alright,” McKenna said. “Guys competed; we just didn’t hit the ball.”
The SwampBats were within striking distance for much of the night, down by just one run heading into the eighth inning, but Potok protected the lead all night. Then the Navigators’ offense picked up in the eighth, scoring three runs, then North Shore added another in the ninth.
The loss marks Keene’s second loss to the Navigators in as many days.
Keene drops to 14-23 and travels to Martha’s Vineyard Friday to take on the Sharks (24-14) at 7:05 p.m.