All posts by FingerLakes1.com, Inc.

PGCBL Shapes Bright Future With Organizational, Structural Changes

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — The Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League (PGCBL) announced today that it has completed its corporate transition to a limited liability company to provide the league with strong organizational governance for the future.

All the existing PGCBL teams have become members of the corporation and the league’s newest franchise in Watertown, which is set to debut in the upcoming 2018 season, was admitted as the 14th team.

In addition to the corporate re-structuring, the PGCBL unanimously decided to divide the league’s 14 teams in a new three-division structure. In addition to the traditional East and West Divisions, a Central Division will be added to the mix in 2018. The breakdown of the three divisions is as follows:

East

Central

West

Albany

Adirondack

Elmira

Amsterdam

Mohawk Valley

Geneva

Glens Falls

Utica

Jamestown

Oneonta

Watertown*

Newark

 Saugerties

Onondaga**

*Will play its inaugural season in 2018.
**Elected voluntary suspension for 2018 season.

Each division nominated a member to sit on the newly-organized Executive Committee. Robbie Nichols (Elmira) will represent the West, Travis Heiser (Mohawk Valley) will represent the Central and Jason Brinkman (Albany) will represent the East. Alyce Lee (Onondaga) was elected treasurer.

In addition to its ongoing duties, the Executive Committee has been given the additional responsibility of managing the company until a new independent Operating Manager is hired. A national search is being conducted to find a strong leader with experience in collegiate and/or minor league baseball to fill the newly recreated office.

Jason Brinkman, vice president and general manager of the Albany Dutchmen, said, “With the corporate transition and the addition of Watertown’s experienced ownership group, we have strengthened the foundation of the league.  It will be an exciting challenge to identify an Operating Manager that will help guide us towards continued future success.”

The PGCBL also elected a scheduling committee in the same divisional representational manner, with the task of preparing the 2018 schedule.

Robbie Nichols, owner of the Elmira Pioneers, commented, “In the six seasons since owning the Elmira Pioneers, this was by far the best and most productive meeting yet. We are united and adding a strong Watertown franchise with a quality ownership group makes our league even better.”

Bob Ohmann, together with his wife, Leslie, owners of the Newark Pilots and Geneva Red Wings added, “Saturday’s meeting was a wonderful coming together to take the PGCBL to a new level. The continuous unanimous votes on all pertinent issues showed that we were all on the same page. We came away from the meeting completely satisfied with our direction for the future.”

Echoing those sentiments was, Travis Heiser, owner of the Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs, who said, “It was very evident that we are all deeply committed to being the very best summer collegiate baseball league in the country.”

About the PGCBL
The Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League is a 14-team summer collegiate baseball league in Upstate New York. Since its inaugural season in 2011, the PGCBL – which annually draws talent from some of the best NCAA, NAIA, and junior college programs – has quickly evolved into the premier wood bat league in the state of New York, while becoming one of the most widely respected summer leagues in the country. The PGCBL is affiliated with Perfect Game, the nation’s largest independent amateur scouting bureau. Last year, there were more than 1,500 players in the pros who either wore the uniform of a PGCBL team or participated in a Perfect Game event. For more information, please visit www.pgcbl.com.

2017 PGCBL All-League Team Announced

The Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League (PGCBL) unveiled today the All-League Team for the 2017 season, as determined by a polling of the league’s head coaches. Nine of the 13 teams in the PGCBL were represented with at least one selection on the First or Second Team, led by the Amsterdam Mohawks and Elmira Pioneers with six honorees apiece.

PGGCBL logoHighlighting this year’s postseason all-star squad are Jamestown catcher Christ Conley (Canisius), the 2017 PGCBL Player of the Year, and Albany righty Matt Pierce (Siena), the 2017 Pitcher of the Year award winner. Conley broke the single-season records for walks (51) and on-base percentage (.582), while leading the circuit with a .610 slugging percentage and ranking second with a .382 batting average. Pierce had a record-breaking summer of his own, as reliever-turned-ace registered a league-best 1.71 ERA and established a new high for wins in a season with eight.

Conley, who garnered Second-Team All-League honors with the Jammers last season, is one of two players that was recognized for the second time this year. Mohawk Valley reliever Zach Vennaro (Mount Olive) completed his third go-around with the DiamondDawgs in 2017 and added an All-League First Team selection to his Second Team award from a year ago.

Several of the league’s statistical leaders were rightfully award this season. Batting champion and Amsterdam Mohawk standout, John Valente (St. John’s), who led all batsmen with a .422 clip, was included on the First Team at third base, and across the diamond, Mohawk Valley’s Russ Olive (UMass Lowell) was named the top first baseman in the PGCBL this season after leading the league in both home runs (8) and RBIs (42). Albany’s Justin Bureau (Ave Maria) tied Vennaro for first place with eight saves this summer and both were elected to the First Team. Alex Bellardini (Youngstown State) racked up a league-high 61.0 innings of work in nine starts for Geneva and was rewarded with a spot on the Second Team.

Two of the three award winners from the 2017 All-Star Game festivities earned additional hardware with an All-League selection. Prospect Game MVP Eric Rivera (Florida Atlantic) and Home Run Derby champ Conor Grammes (Xavier) were both recognized on the First Team.

Below are the complete 2017 PGCBL All-League First and Second Teams:

2017 PGCBL All-League First Team
C – Christ Conley (Canisius) – Jamestown
1B – Russ Olive (UMass Lowell) – Mohawk Valley
2B – Nick Estrella (Azusa Pacific) – Albany
SS – Nick Gallo (Oklahoma State) – Albany
3B – John Valente (St. John’s) – Amsterdam
OF – John Conti (Canisius) – Jamestown
OF – Brian Uliana (Rider) – Glens Falls
OF – Eric Rivera (Florida Atlantic) – Amsterdam
DH/UTL – Conor Grammes (Xavier) – Elmira

SP – Matt Pierce (Siena) – Albany
SP – David Lyskawa (Niagara County C.C.) – Jamestown
SP – Andrew Saalfrank (Indiana) – Amsterdam
SP – Houston Roth (Ole Miss) – Elmira
RP – Zach Vennaro (Mount Olive) – Mohawk Valley
RP – Justin Bureau (Ave Maria) – Albany

2017 PGCBL All-League Second Team
C – Marshall Gilbert (John A. Logan) – Elmira
1B – Liam Wilson (Canisius) – Amsterdam
2B – Jimmy Standohar (Mercyhurst) – Jamestown
SS – Will Holland (Auburn) – Amsterdam
3B – Hunter Wells (Tyler J.C.) – Newark
OF – Mikey Arman (Kenyon) – Geneva
OF – Matt Chamberlain (New Haven) – Geneva
OF – Ayrton Schafer (Samford) – Elmira
DH/UTL – Allbry Major (Xavier) – Elmira

SP – Alex Bellardini (Youngstown State) – Geneva
SP – Henry Martinez (Cypress) – Newark
SP – Grant Donahue (Virginia) – Elmira
SP – Thomas Lane (Boston College) – Amsterdam
RP – Matt Bowman (SUNY Broome C.C.) – Onondaga
RP – Allbry Major (Xavier) – Elmira

About the PGCBL
The Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League is a 13-team summer collegiate baseball league in Upstate New York. Since its inaugural season in 2011, the PGCBL – which annually draws talent from some of the best NCAA, NAIA, and junior college programs – has quickly evolved into the premier wood bat league in the state of New York, while becoming one of the most widely respected summer leagues in the country. The PGCBL is affiliated with Perfect Game, the nation’s largest independent amateur scouting bureau. Last year, there were more than 1,500 players in the pros who either wore the uniform of a PGCBL team or participated in a Perfect Game event. For more information, please visit www.pgcbl.com.

Albany Dutchmen RHP Matt Pierce Named 2017 PGCBL Pitcher of the Year

Albany Dutchmen Matt Pierce
Photo Credit: Travis Larner

The Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League (PGCBL) is pleased today to announce Albany Dutchmen right-hander Matt Pierce (Siena) as the recipient of the 2017 PGCBL Pitcher of the Year award, as voted on by the league’s head coaches.

Pierce helped the Dutchmen (33-16) qualify for the postseason as the second seed out of the East Division by leading the league with the lowest earned-run average among qualified pitchers and breaking the single-season wins record, a mark held by several previous Pitcher of the Year honorees.

“It feels rewarding to be named Pitcher of the Year,” Pierce said. “It feels great to see all of the hard work put in over these past months of summer baseball pay off. I couldn’t have done it without my team, not only are they great ball players but all around great people as well. Also for my coaching staff, they had my back throughout the entire summer.”

“I’ve known Matt for at least five or six years now, from coaching his teams or giving him lessons, and I cannot be happier for a kid that’s worked as hard as he has,” said Albany head coach Nick Davey. “He earned this award, it wasn’t given to him. You couldn’t pick a better person to be the first Dutchmen player in the franchise’s history to win an end-of-year award.”

The 6-foot-2, 234-pound righty posted an 8-1 record with a 1.71 ERA and 26 strikeouts in 42.0 innings of work on the mound this summer. He not only led the PGCBL in both wins and ERA, but his eight victories established a new single-season record, one more than the likes of Joe DeSarro (Herkimer/SNHU), Zach Logue (Kentucky) and Chandler Shepherd (Kentucky), who each garnered Pitcher of the Year accolades during their time in the PGCBL. Although he wasn’t a strikeout pitcher like each of the aforementioned hurlers, Pierce’s 1.17 WHIP was tied for the third-lowest in the league in 2017.

Pierce’s improbable run to the top pitching honor began out of the Albany bullpen. As a freshman at Siena College this spring he was used exclusively as a reliever, and as a result, he began the month of June with four consecutive relief outings before earning his first start.

“He started immediately out of the bullpen for us because I’m a firm believer that you don’t win games in the first five innings, so we like to have depth and quality arms coming out of the back end of our bullpen,” Davey explained.

After back-to-back hitless relief appearances, Davey gave Pierce a spot start on June 20 in a home game against Glens Falls. The Schenectady, N.Y., native twirled a gem with 6.0 shutout innings and two strikeouts without issuing a walk, helping the Dutchmen roll to a 10-0 victory.

“My goal this summer was to work towards gaining a role as a starting pitcher,” Pierce said. “I didn’t expect that to be given to me, so I looked to be as efficient as possible during my relief outings to hopefully transfer that efficiency into a starting outing if given the opportunity.”

Following a successful audition, Pierce solidified his spot in the rotation for the second half of the season with Albany fighting to secure a home playoff game.

“Once we put in him into the starting lineup, we couldn’t take him out of it,” Davey added.

In his final four outings – all starts – Pierce was a perfect 4-0. He held Oneonta scoreless and struck out a season-high-tying six in 6.0 innings on July 6 to begin the stellar stretch. In Amsterdam on July 14, he held the red-hot Mohawks offense to just one run in 6.0 innings, guiding Albany to a 10-4 victory over the East Division regular-season champs. In his final appearance on July 30, the rising sophomore struck out six and earned his record-breaking eighth win of the season in a lopsided 14-2 decision on the road against Onondaga.

As a starter Pierce was masterful; he finished the 2017 campaign with an unblemished 5-0 record and a 1.55 ERA in five starts.

According to Pierce, his time with the Albany Dutchmen organization was “a great summer baseball experience.”

“Playing in this league was a huge help because of the competition we faced,” he said. “Facing great players from different schools really kept me busy each day and each outing, as tried to improve as a pitcher.”

PGCBL Pitcher of the Year Award Winners
2017: Matt Pierce (Albany) – Siena
2016: Joe DeSarro (Mohawk Valley) – Herkimer/SNHU; Brennen Price (Victor) – Canisius
2015: Zach Logue (Amsterdam) – Kentucky; Kyano Cummings (Elmira) – Siena
2014: Jayson Yano (Newark) – Stevens Institute of Technology
2013: Eann Cox (Cooperstown) – Black Hawk College
2012: Chandler Shepherd (Amsterdam) – Kentucky
2011: Dominick Ruscitti (Newark) – Kutztown

About the PGCBL
The Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League is a 13-team summer collegiate baseball league in Upstate New York. Since its inaugural season in 2011, the PGCBL – which annually draws talent from some of the best NCAA, NAIA, and junior college programs – has quickly evolved into the premier wood bat league in the state of New York, while becoming one of the most widely respected summer leagues in the country. The PGCBL is affiliated with Perfect Game, the nation’s largest independent amateur scouting bureau. Last year, there were more than 1,500 players in the pros who either wore the uniform of a PGCBL team or participated in a Perfect Game event. For more information, please visit www.pgcbl.com.

Jamestown’s Christ Conley Crowned 2017 PGCBL Player of the Year

Christ Conley

The Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League (PGCBL) is pleased to announce today that Jamestown Jammers catcher Christ Conley (Canisius) has been named the 2017 PGCBL Player of the Year, as voted on by the league’s head coaches.

Conley returned to Jamestown for a second stint in the PGCBL after earning All-Star and Second-Team All-League accolades with the Jammers in 2016. He one-upped last year’s outstanding performance by garnering highest honor doled out by the league to a batter, while breaking some records along the way.

Photo credits: Travis Larner

“It’s an honor to win this award and it’s something I wasn’t expecting,” Conley said. “I don’t like to think too much about awards from a personal standpoint; the main goal for every team is to win a championship. For a team to make it to a championship you’re going to have some good teammates and it makes it easier to play when you’re surrounded by other guys who are doing well.”

“Christ is an on-base machine and he is mature beyond his years,” stated Jeff Kunion, president of the PGCBL. “He doesn’t waste at-bats and he controls the game from behind the plate. I’m looking forward to watching him play for an MLB organization next summer.”

Conley amassed one of the most impressive slash lines in league history in 41 regular-season games played in a Jamestown uniform this season. He ranked second among qualified batsmen with a .382 average (47-for-123) while leading the entire PGCBL with a .582 on-base percentage and a .610 slugging percentage – he was the only qualified batter in the circuit with an on-base percentage above .500 and a slugging percentage above .600. In terms of league history, Conley shattered the previous record for on-base percentage, which was set by 2014 Player of the Year Josh Gardiner (.543). His slugging percentage is the third highest all-time and his batting average ranks seventh.

Bolstering Conley’s numbers at the dish was his record-setting patience. In 190 total plate appearances over the course of the regular season, the rising senior from Canisius College drew 51 walks – breaking the previous league mark by eight – versus only 20 strikeouts. Although he wasn’t the fleetest of foot in the Jamestown lineup, the 6-foot-1, 230-pound backstop found a home batting lead-off due to his uncanny ability to reach base safely. He did so in 40-of-41 games, with the lone exception coming on June 24, when he went 0-for-1 as a pinch-hitter in the bottom of the ninth inning.

The Derby, N.Y., native, however, was not only able to earn a plethora of free passes from opposing pitchers, but he also flexed his muscles and displayed tremendous pop in his bat. Conley registered 13 doubles and launched five home runs, ranking among the top five in the league in both categories.

For the second year in a row, Conley started for the West Division in the annual PGCBL All-Star Game. He singled to lead-off the top of the first inning and drove in a run with an RBI grounder in the third. He was also recognized as the Week 1 Player of the Week, a prelude to the incredible season he would go on to record. Over the course of his two seasons as a Jammer, he amassed a combined 85 hits, including 20 doubles and eight homers, to go along with 69 runs, 52 RBIs and a whopping 93 walks.

“I am so proud of Christ,” Jamestown head coach Anthony Barone said. “He has been a mainstay in our lineup over the past two seasons. He is a winner and always puts the team first. I’m glad he can enjoy this award, being recognized as the most valuable player in the PGCBL. His numbers speak for themselves, along with the fact that he was the backbone on a first-place team.”

Barone added, “He will get his chance at professional baseball and he proved himself these past two seasons. He was the head of the class this season in one of the premier leagues in the country.”

According to Conley, the decision to return to Jamestown in 2017 was an easy one. Not only is Russell E. Diethrick Jr. Park a short drive from his hometown, he noted that the Jammers run a first-class organization and that the competition in the PGCBL provides an invaluable experience on the diamond.

“It’s a great community with great fans,” Conley said. “We are treated like a pro ball team and that makes the summer experience that much better.”

“It’s a very well-run league and I’m lucky to have been a part of it and the Jammers organization for the last two seasons” he added. “This league has good competition. To come here for the summer and be successful can help give you confidence going back to school for the spring season.”

PGCBL Player of the Year Award Winners
2017: Christ Conley (Jamestown) – Canisius
2016: Joe Genord (Amsterdam) – South Florida
2015: Christian Santisteban (Elmira) – Manhattan
2014: Josh Gardiner (Amsterdam) – Radford
2013: John Nogowski (Amsterdam) – Florida State
2012: Ross Kivett (Glens Falls) – Kansas State
2011: Erick Gaylord (Watertown) – CampbellAbout the PGCBL
The Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League is a 13-team summer collegiate baseball league in Upstate New York. Since its inaugural season in 2011, the PGCBL – which annually draws talent from some of the best NCAA, NAIA, and junior college programs – has quickly evolved into the premier wood bat league in the state of New York, while becoming one of the most widely respected summer leagues in the country. The PGCBL is affiliated with Perfect Game, the nation’s largest independent amateur scouting bureau. Last year, there were more than 1,500 players in the pros who either wore the uniform of a PGCBL team or participated in a Perfect Game event. For more information, please visit www.pgcbl.com.

Jamestown’s Anthony Barone Named 2017 PGCBL Coach of the Year

The Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League (PGCBL) has released the first of its year-end awards for the 2017 season and is pleased to announce that Jamestown Jammers head coach Anthony Barone was voted the Coach of the Year by his peers.

Barone, who has been at the helm of Jamestown in its three years as a summer collegiate team, helped the Jammers reach new heights this summer. The team won a franchise-record 34 games in 2017 and finished as the No. 1 seed in the West Division with a 34-15 overall record. After solidifying the top seed in the regular season, the Jammers swept their way to the PGCBL Championship Series, their first-ever title appearance, where they pushed Mohawk Valley to the brink in the best-of-three series.

“Coach Barone did an outstanding job leading his team to the West Division Championship,” said PGCBL President Jeff Kunion. “He really works hard at developing his players and has a great rapport with his young men; just look at how many returned this year to Jamestown.  He truly exemplifies what the PGCBL wants in its coaches.”

“I couldn’t be happier for Anthony,” exclaimed Dan Kuenzi, President of ROC Ventures, the organization that owns and operates the Jamestown Jammers. “He guided the Jammers to the final game of the championship series in just our second season in the PGCBL. A good percentage of our guys were on the Jamestown roster last summer as well and it is a testament to how much these kids love playing for him.”

Under Barone’s tutelage, the Jammers ended the summer ranked near the top of most statistical categories, and boasted the league’s lowest team ERA (3.29) and best fielding percentage (.964). At the plate, Jamestown was second out of the 13-team league in on-base percentage (.407), and third in batting average (.286), runs scored (343) and hits (471). Perhaps most impressive, the Jammers were the only team in the PGCBL to register more walks (312) than strikeouts (310).

A multitude of Jamestown players also achieved success on an individual level with Barone’s guidance. Christ Conley (Canisius) led all qualified batters with a .610 slugging percentage and a .582 on-base percentage, while finishing second with a .382 batting average, and Ben Brookover (UTSA) and Skyler Valentine (UTSA) ranked first and third in hits with 64 and 58, respectively. On the mound, southpaw starter David Lyskawa (Niagara County C.C.) finished second in the league with 53 strikeouts in just 38.0 innings of work.

As a result, Jamestown sent more players to the 2017 PGCBL All-Star Game than any other team in the league with nine representatives.

“I want to thank the players and assistant coach Hayden Carter for a tremendous season, and ROC Ventures owner Mike Zimmerman and President Dan Kuenzi for their tremendous support,” Barone said. “I wish we could have brought back the championship, but it was overall an excellent season. We were ranked as high as No. 4 in the country, won the West Division regular-season title, and won the West in the postseason as well.”

“It is a great honor to win this award, as there are some outstanding coaches in the PGCBL,” he added.

About the PGCBL
The Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League is a 13-team summer collegiate baseball league in Upstate New York. Since its inaugural season in 2011, the PGCBL – which annually draws talent from some of the best NCAA, NAIA, and junior college programs – has quickly evolved into the premier wood bat league in the state of New York, while becoming one of the most widely respected summer leagues in the country. The PGCBL is affiliated with Perfect Game, the nation’s largest independent amateur scouting bureau. Last year, there were more than 1,500 players in the pros who either wore the uniform of a PGCBL team or participated in a Perfect Game event. For more information, please visit www.pgcbl.com.

PGCBL President Jeff Kunion Announces Retirement

Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League (PGCBL) President Jeff Kunion announced today his intention to retire from his role as president when his contract expires at the end of the 2017 calendar year.

“My family will shortly be moving to Florida and with all of our teams in upstate New York, I would no longer be able to continue my work,” Kunion said.

He added, “We have come a long way in the almost six years I have served as league president.  We have added six new teams, increased our level of competition, had hundreds of players drafted by MLB and play professional baseball, increased our fan base and attendance, and created a footprint across upstate New York. We have become one of the premier leagues in the country and the No. 1 league in New York State.”

Kunion has amassed more than 30 years of experience in the baseball world during his professional career. He began with the New York Mets in 1980 and spent seven years in their business office. He subsequently owned, operated and managed teams in the Double-A Eastern League, Northeast League and Central League. He also spent more than 10 years as bench coach and/or Director of Player Personnel for the North Shore Spirit (Can-Am), Florence Freedom (Frontier), Jackson Generals (Central) and Elmira Pioneers (Can-Am). Prior to being named president of the PGCBL, Kunion owned the Elmira Pioneers (NYCBL/PGCBL).

In a statement, the PGCBL Board of Directors applauded the work of Kunion.

“We want to thank Jeff for his time with the league. His leadership and service has been instrumental in getting the league up and running. With his help we are one of the best run leagues in the country.”

About the PGCBL
The Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League is a 13-team summer collegiate baseball league in Upstate New York. Since its inaugural season in 2011, the PGCBL – which annually draws talent from some of the best NCAA, NAIA, and junior college programs – has quickly evolved into the premier wood bat league in the state of New York, while becoming one of the most widely respected summer leagues in the country. The PGCBL is affiliated with Perfect Game, the nation’s largest independent amateur scouting bureau. Last year, there were more than 1,500 players in the pros who either wore the uniform of a PGCBL team or participated in a Perfect Game event. For more information, please visit www.pgcbl.com.

Pilots Drop Summer Finale

Amsterdam defeats Newark 17-4 at Colburn Park

NEWARK, NY (7.30.17) – The Amsterdam Mohawks defeated the Newark Pilots 17-4 in the Pilots regular season finale at Colburn Park.  The win improves the Mohawks to 35-12, the loss drops the Pilots to 19-31.  Andrew Saalfrank (Indiana) pitched 2 innings in relief, struck out 3 batters and picked up the win.  Zach Mann (Saginaw Valley) gave up 7 hits, 7 runs, and 3 walks in 2 innings and took the loss.

The Mohawks on the board early and often.  In the first, after a lead off single by John Valente (St. John’s), then back to back walks by Dalton Skelton (Louisiana Tech) and Jake Mueller (Wake Forest) loaded up the bases with no outs.  Dylan Reynolds (Fairfield) and Dustin Skelton (Mississippi State) drove Valente and Da. Skelton in with sacrifice flys to give Amsterdam a 2-0 lead.

In the bottom of the first, the Pilots got on the board.  Brooks Knapek (UMass) walked the bases loaded, then threw a wild pitch that allowed Hunter Wells (Tyler JC) to score from third.

In the top of the second, Amsterdam sent 11 men to the plate, and added 5 to run their lead to 7-1.  Toby Welk (Penn State Berks) and Chris Hamilton (Stony Brook) started the inning off with back-to-back infield singles.  Welk came around to score on a Valente single.  After Mann hit Da. Skelton to load the bases, Hamilton came around to score from third on a wild pitch.  Mueller then drove Valente in with a single.  Reynolds followed with a ground out to second to drive in Da. Skelton.  Du. Skelton rounded out the second inning scoring with a single.

In the top of the third, the Mohawks added three more.  After Valente and Da. Skelton both reached with one out, the moved to second on a wild pitch.  Mueller and Reynolds both hit run scoring singles to drive in Valente and Da. Skelton respectively.  After Du. Skelton walked to load the bases, Dan Maynard (Maryland) followed with a walk of his own to score Mueller from third to give Amsterdam a 10-1 lead after three.

In the bottom of the fourth, the Pilots added a run.  After Peter Battaglia (Niagara) walked to start the inning, Jonathan Parker (Jones County JC) hit a single.  After back-to-back strikeouts from Knapek, Josh Loeffler (UConn) hit a two-out double to drive in Battaglia to cut the lead to 10-2.

Amsterdam added another run in the top of the fifth, when Welk was hit by a Jake Bernardo (Fordham) offering with the bases loaded to score Mueller.

The Mohawks would then add 5 in the seventh to go up 16-2.  Graham Hackbarth (Pearl River CC) hit Reynolds, Du. Skelton, and Maynard on three consecutive pitches to load the bases to start the frame.  On an 0-1 count, Welk promptly unloaded them with a bases cleading 3-run double down the left field line.  Welk came around to score on a Battaglia error.  Da. Skelton then drove in Robbie Spagnola (Hudson Valley CC) with a double to round out the scoring.

In the top of the eighth, Hamilton hit a sacrifice fly to score pinch hitter Justin Reed (Indiana) from third to give Amsterdam a 17-2 lead.

In the bottom of the ninth, the Pilots made it interesting by scoring two runs to cut the lead to 17-4.  After Holden White (Wake Forest) loaded the bases, he surrendered walks to Mark McKenna (Canisius) and Will Allocca (Virgina) to drive in Zach Santoro (Notre Dame College) and Adam Donovan (DeSales) respectively.

Box Score

For more information please contact Leslie Ohmann, General Manager for the Newark Pilots, at (315) 576-6710 or Leslie@newarkpilots.com.

Pilots Drop Contest With Flames

Onondaga Wins Second Straight Against Pilots

NEWARK, NY (7.29.17) – The Onondaga Flames defeated the Newark Pilots at Colburn Park 12-3 to run their record to 23-24.  The loss drops the Pilots to 19-30.  After winning last night to clinch the final playoff spot in the West, the Flames won their second straight against the Pilots.  Zach Kemp (Wells) picks up his first win of the summer, tossing 6.2 innings, giving up 11 hits, 3 runs, 3 walks, while striking out 4.  Will Frank (Canisius) takes his third loss, going just 3 innings, giving up 8 hits, 5 runs, 2 walks, while striking out 6.

The Flames got the scoring started in the opening frame off of Frank.  Colin BeVard (Cortland) led off the game with a single, he then moved to second with a one out, Trey Baur (Cornell) walk.  Sam Little (Ithaca) drove them both in with a two run double to give Onondaga a 2-0 lead.

In the top of the second, the Flames added to their lead.  Dylan Nolan (Wells) led the inning off with a walk, and Tyler Rourke (Alabama A&M) followed that with a single.  BeVard moved to third on a fly out, then came around to score on a Kyle Gallagher (Cornell) sacrifice fly.  Trey Baur followed that up with a single, to move Rourke to second.  Both runners move up on a wild pitch from Frank.  Rourke would score on the next pitch off of a Will Allocca (Virginia) passed ball.  Little then drove in Baur from second to give the Flames a 5-0 lead.

The Pilots landed in the run column in the bottom half of the second, with a two-out infield single from Christian Orr (Saginaw Valley) to drive in Jonathan Parker (Jones County JC).  In the bottom of the fourth, they would add another with a Parker single to drive in Colton Carney (Seton Hill).

After a scoreless fifth and sixth, the Flames reentered the run column in the top of the seventh.  After back singles to start the inning from Little and Matt Carey (Ithaca), Alex Canty (Monroe CC) roped a double to drive in Little.  Carey would then come around to score from third on a sac fly from Nolan, and Canty would score from second on a Rourke single to give the Flames a 8-2 lead.

The Pilots got a run in the bottom half of the frame to cut the lead to 8-3.  After Kemp walked the bases loaded, he was pulled for Hayden Ewell (Niagara County CC), who walked Carney with the bases loaded to score Mark McKenna (Canisius).  That’s as close the Pilots would get.

In the top of the ninth, the Flames added four.  Parker walked Little to lead off the inning, then hit Carey.  With one out, Wyatt Myers (Buffalo) drove in Little with a single.  Both Myers and Cary would come around to score when Nolan hit a first pitch offering down the right field line for a two run triple.  Nolan then came in to score on a Rourke fielders choice ground out to give the Flames a 12-3 lead.

Flames Notables: Little 3-4, 2B, BB, 2 runs, 3 RBI’s.  Canty 3-5, 2 2B, 1 run, 1 RBI.  Nolan 1-3, 3B, BB, 2 runs, 3 RBI’s.  Rourke 3-5, 2B, 1 run, 2 RBI’s.

Pilots Notables: Hunter Wells (Tyler JC) 3-5.  Parker 3-5, 1 run, 1 RBI, 4 K’s on the mound.

Box Score

Newark will host Amsterdam tomorrow at 7:05.  The Flames will host Albany at 5:00.

For more information please contact Leslie Ohmann, General Manager for the Newark Pilots, at (315) 576-6710 or Leslie@newarkpilots.com.

Flames Blank Pilots to Clinch Playoffs

Onondaga, NY-  The Onondaga Flames (22-24) and the Newark Pilots (19-29) played Friday night at Onondaga Community College in a game with huge playoff implications.  The Flames came into the contest with a three-game lead on the Pilots for the final playoff spot in the West Division with four games left for both teams.

The Flames won the game 3-0 to clinch the final playoff spot and knock the Pilots out of contention.

The Flames tabbed relief pitcher Jared Strait (Wells College) with his first start of the year and were rewarded as he pitched a brilliant seven scoreless innings.  At one point Strait retired 14 consecutive Pilots batters.  Altogether, Strait allowed just two hits while striking out six.

“He went out and gave one of the gutsiest performances of the year.”  Said head coach Ryan Stevens.

Strait was the second relief pitcher to get a start in two days as Dom Spinoso (Fairleigh Dickinson University) pitched game one of the doubleheader on Thursday night.

“Dom Spinoso, [Evan] Reichel, and then tonight Strait they came out and they pitched with their heart,” said Stevens.  “You can’t ask for more, especially when the cards are stacked against you like that.”

On offense the Flames got on the board early as Stephen Bennett (Canisius College) led off the bottom of the first with a solo home run.  Bennett has now hit two home runs in the past two days after starting the season with zero.

“Coach has put me up in the leadoff spot it’s given me more fastballs, which as many people know I’m more of a fastball hitter,” said Bennett.  “Also, I’ve been working a lot on getting my swing back to where it was when I started this year.”

The Onondaga got its other two runs in the fifth inning off and RBI double by Matt Carey (Ithaca College) and RBI single by Kyle Gallagher (Cornell University).

Strait earned his third victory of the year to run his record to 3-1.

Closer Matt Bowman (Ithaca College) earned his seventh save of the season as he pitched out of a jam in the ninth inning with runners at the corners.

For Newark, Trevor Rumsey (St. John Fisher College) was given the loss in his PGCBL debut.  Rumsey pitched well as he allowed three runs in six innings of work.

Onondaga will travel to Newark on Saturday for the second game of a home and home with the Pilots.

Pilots/Red Wings Split Double Header

Newark and Geneva Each Win One in Double Header at Colburn Park

NEWARK, NY (7.27.17) – The Newark Pilots and Geneva Red Wings split a double header at Colburn Park.  Geneva took game one 4-0 to improve their record to 28-19.  Alex Bellardini (Youngstown State) picked up his sixth win, going 6 scoreless frames, striking out 3.  Chris Vitale (Erie CC) took the loss.  In game two, Newark won 6-4 to improve their record to 19-28.  Kyle Griffen (Louisiana Tech) picked up the win in relief, pitching 4 innings, striking out 5.  Stephen Larson (Iowa Wesleyan) took the loss.

The Red Wings got the game one scoring started in the top of the first.  TJ Byrd (Rend Lake) led off the game with a walk off of Vitale, he then moved to second on a Dominic Toso (Bucknell Commit) sacrifice bunt.  Byrd would score on a Will Simoneit (Cornell) single to take a 1-0 lead.

In the top of the third, the Red Wings doubled their lead.  Toso led the inning off with an infield single, he then moved to third on a Mikey Arman (Kenyon) double.  Simoneit drove him in for his second RBI, and the games second run, to take a 2-0 lead.

Geneva doubled their lead in the top of the fifth.  After Vitale retired the first two batters in the frame, the Red Wings started a two-out rally.  A Toso walk, Arman single, and Simoneit single loaded the bases with two outs.  The next batter, Joseph Tassin (Bossier Parish CC) lined a single up the middle to drive in Toso from third.  Arman would come around to score on the play on an error from Pilots center fielder Mark McKenna (Canisius) to give Geneva a 4-0 lead.

The 4-0 lead was all Bellardini would need in game one.  He scattered four singles over six innings of work, while striking out three.  Tyler Key (Mendocino) pitched a scoreless, 1-2-3 bottom of the seventh to end the game.

Box Score

In the bottom of the first of game two, the Pilots would finally get into the run column.  McKenna led off the frame with a walk, then moved to second on a Hunter Wells (Tyler JC) single.  McKenna would come around to score on a Will Allocca (Virginia) one-out single to give the Pilots an early 1-0 lead.

In the Pilots half of the second, they would add more.  Jonathan Parker (Jones County JC) led the inning off with a first pitch double off of Larson, then moved to third on a fielders choice, groundout from Josh Loeffler (UConn).  Parker would score on a Zach Santoro (Notre Dame College) single to make it 2-0.  McKenna doubled the score when he took Larson deep, for his first home run of the summer.  Santoro also came around to score on the HR to give the Pilots a 4-0 lead.

In the top of the third, the Red Wings would cut the lead in half off of Pilots starter Alec Teska (St. John’s Fisher).  Matt Chamberlain (New Haven) led the inning off with a walk, then moved to second when Toso was hit by a Teaka pitch.  Chamberlain came around to score on an Arman single.  After Simoneit was hit by a pitch, Tassin lofted a sacrifice fly to left to drive in Toso to cut the lead to 4-2.

The Pilots answered the call in their half of the third.  On the first pitch of the inning from Larson, Allocca took him deep off of the Colburn Park scoreboard in left, to give the Pilots a 5-2 lead.  In the top of the fourth, Geneva got that run back when Ben Terwilliger (Maine Commit) led off the inning with a walk, moved to second on a wild pitch, then scored on a Justin Etts (NJIT) single to make it 5-3.  The Etts single knocked Teska out of the game two batters into the fourth.

The Pilots would add an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth.  Parker led the inning off with a walk, and Loeffler moved him over with a single.  The next batter, Santoro, laid down a bunt, the pitcher, Domenic Nardone (Siena) tried to get the lead runner at third, but over threw Tassin, and Parker came around to score on an E1 to extend the Pilots lead to 6-3.

Geneva would make it interesting in the top of the seventh off Griffen.  Arman led the inning off with a single, then moved to second on a Tassin single.  Arman would come around to score on a Justice Bigbie (Western Carolina) single.  With the tying run on first, the Red Wings sent up a pinch hitter, Will Hampson (Southwest Tennessee CC) to face Griffen.  On a 3-2 count, Griffen got Hampson to ground into a game ending, 4-6-3 double play.

Box Score

Newark will travel to Onondaga tomorrow to play the Flames at 7:05.  Geneva will play at Elmira.

For more information please contact Leslie Ohmann, General Manager for the Newark Pilots, at (315) 576-6710 or Leslie@newarkpilots.com.