LITTLE FALLS, NY – In a game that saw as many stolen bases (eight) as total errors, the Mohawk Valley Diamond Dawgs rode a five-run fourth inning to a big victory, 10-7 over the Newark Pilots at Veteran’s Memorial Park.
Newark grabbed the early advantage in the third off a hard-hit ball to left field by Parker Denny (Arlington, VA/Seton Hill). That ball to left would give Denny a single and score David Bermudez (East Brunswick, NJ/Rider). Two perfectly timed bunts by Diamond Dawgs Owen Wosleger (East Hampton, CT/Mount St. Mary’s) and Jake Barbiere (Randolph, NJ/Rider) allowed Hunter Sibley (Millville, NJ/Iona) to tie up the game, while two straight errors by the Newark catcher and pitcher allowed Wosleger to give Mohawk Valley the lead. Not to be outdone, two groundouts by Dylan Klock (St. Johnsville, NY/St. Thomas Aquinas) and Nick Cimillo (Airmont, NY/Manhattan) would allow Barbiere and Jacob Josey (/Florida Atlantic) to score. Errors would doom the Pilots to a fifth run, scoring CJ Rodriguez (/Vanderbilt) and extending the lead to four.
Denny would strike again in the fifth, crushing a ball into the center field bleachers to score himself, Allen Murphy (Richburg, NY/St. John Fisher) and Kameron Reynolds (Cherryville, NC/Mars Hill). However, two straight sacrifice flies by the Diamond Dawgs in the bottom of the inning by Josey and Cimillo brought home another two runs to extend the lead back to three.
Bermudez got another run in the sixth, when an RBI double off the center-field wall scored Reynolds. Yet again, however, errors would bring home a Mohawk Valley (25-13) run, as a lazy pop fly bounced off of the catcher’s glove into the infield. That unforced error brought home Joyce and extended the lead to three runs.
The Pilots (13-28) would not go away, though, as, in the seventh, they brought home Denny once more on an error by the Mohawk Valley right fielder. The Diamond Dawgs would pick up the three-run lead once again on a towering RBI double by Rodriguez to score Klock. Joyce would bring him home on yet another Newark unforced error, this time by the Pilots’ center fielder, the team’s fifth of the night.
Shaun Hillis (Derby, CT/Iona) would bring the Pilots within three runs with a towering home run off of the light stanchion in left field, but that would be all Connor Stapleton (Staten Island, NY/Concordia) would allow, setting the next three Pilots down in order to snap the Diamond Dawgs’ two-game losing streak.
Carson Coon picked up the win for the Diamond Dawgs, while Devin Hicks (/) was saddled with the loss for Newark, who have seen their playoff hopes fade to almost nothing in the midst of their current six-game losing streak.
The Diamond Dawgs will have a day off on Wednesday before playing the middle game of their three-game stand at Veteran’s Memorial Park on Thursday, their final game against the Glens Falls Dragons. That game against the Dragons will start a stretch of 11 games in seven days, including three doubleheaders. The Pilots will head back to Colburn Park on Wednesday for a game with the Elmira Pioneers.
Photos by Dave Warner