Jaspers Win Slugfest at Provident Bank Park
POMONA, N.Y. – Offense was on full display at Provident Bank Park on Tuesday night. In a contest that featured 31 runs, 34 hits and three lead changes, the Manhattan College baseball team (17-21) ultimately came out on top, scoring six times in the bottom of the eighth to secure a 17-14 victory over NYIT (5-32).
After NYIT got on the board first with three runs in the top of the second, Ramon Ortega (Miami, Fla.) crushed a long home run to left field that cleared the stadium after hitting the bleachers more than 330 feet away. However, the Bears rallied for two more runs in the third to increase their cushion to 5-1.
Manhattan tied the game with a four-spot in the bottom of the fourth. Ortega started the rally with a one-out walk, then moved to third on a Joe McClennan (Highland Mills, N.Y.) double. Both runners scored when Brendan Slattery (Danbury, Conn.) delivered a double to the gap in right center, and Joe Rock (Carmel, N.Y.) followed with a base hit to left that knocked in another run. After Rock stole second, Yoandry Galan (Miami, Fla.) lifted a fly ball that would’ve ended the inning, but was dropped by the NYIT left fielder, allowing Rock to come across with the tying run.
The Bears went back in front with two in the top of the fifth, as Joshua Canabal ripped an RBI single and Christopher Rula drew a bases loaded walk. Manhattan immediately responded, thoigh, putting up a five-spot in the bottom half of the inning. Chris Reynolds (Wall, N.J.) and Kyle Murphy (Waterbury, Conn.) each walked to start the inning before Ortega smoked a two-run double to left center. After a Christian Santisteban (Miami, Fla.) walk and a McClennan RBI single, Rock was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Galan was up next, and his grounder towards third bounced off the bag and went into left field for a two-run single, giving the Jaspers a 10-7 lead.
Back-to-back RBI triples by Ali Rodriguez and Dan Lackner in the top of the sixth started a five-run rally that made it 12-10 in favor of NYIT. The Jaspers got one run back on McClennan’s RBI single in the bottom of the sixth, but the Bears added a run in the seventh and another in the eighth to increase their cushion to 14-11.
Murphy led off the bottom of the eighth with a walk, then stole second and moved to third on an error. After Santisteban walked to load the bases, McClennan connected for his fourth hit of the night, an RBI single to center field. Slattery followed with an RBI single, pulling the Jaspers within one at 14-13.
With the bases still loaded, Manhattan Head Coach Jim Duffy called upon Andrew Gorecki (Smithtown, N.Y.) as a pinch hitter. He just missed a grand slam by inches, smashing a double off the wall in right field that knocked in two runs, giving Manhattan a 15-14 lead. After Galan reached on an error, pinch hitter Matt Troisi (Brooklyn, N.Y.) knocked in another run with a bases loaded walk. Murphy was up next, and he beat out the throw to first on what looked like an inning-ending double play ball. Galan scored on the play to make it a three-run game, 17-14.
In the top of the ninth, Duffy turned to Michael Martin (Massapequa, N.Y.) to close out the victory. Martin retired the Bears in order, inducing a pair of groundouts before getting Canabal looking to end the three-and-a-half-hour contest.
As a team, Manhattan collected 14 hits in the game. McClennan went 4-for-5 with three runs scored and three RBIs, while Ortega was 3-for-5 with a home run and two doubles. He scored five times and drove in three runs. Slattery finished 2-for-5 with a run scored and three RBIs, and Galan had a perfect 2-for-2 day at the plate. He also scored a run and drove in another. Gorecki and Galan each recorded two RBIs, while Murphy and Santisteban scored two runs apiece.
Casey Meyers (Brookside, N.J.) got the start on the mound and lasted 4.2 innings. He allowed seven runs on eight hits, struck out five and walked two. Sean Abbate (Levittown, N.Y.) gave up three runs and three hits while walking one in 0.1 innings, and Tyler Mulvaney (Santa Monica, Calif.) was charged with three runs (two earned), five hits and a walk in two innings of work. Chris Liquori (Wyckoff, N.J.) (2-1) earned the win after yielding one run on four hits in the eighth, while Martin tossed a perfect ninth to pick up his first save of the season.
Every NYIT starter had at least one hit, as the Bears finished with 20 hits as a team. Canabal went 5-for-6 with two runs scored and two RBIs, while Rodriguez was 3-for-5 with four runs scored and two RBIs. Rula also had three hits, going 3-for-4 with a run scored and three RBIs, and Michael Fermin boasted a 3-for-6 effort. He also scored twice and drove in a run. Robert Loftus added a pair of RBIs out of the leadoff spot.
Starting pitcher Michael Auriemmo went four-plus innings for NYIT. He yielded six runs (five earned) on five hits, walked four and struck out two. James Moussa was charged with three runs, two hits and a walk, while Luke Mirabella tossed three innings, allowing two runs (one earned) and four hits with two strikeouts. Alex Gounaris walked two and surrendered three runs (two earned) before Matt Maier (0-1) gave up three runs (one earned) on three hits and a walk in one inning to take the loss.The Jaspers play a home game at Provident Bank Park, home of the Rockland Boulders, for the second straight night on Wednesday, when they take on Albany (16-16-1) at 7 p.m.