Big hits fuel 10-6 win for ‘Dawgs over Pilots

Little Falls, N.Y. – Six of Mohawk Valley’s 10 hits went for extra bases as the DiamondDawgs topped Newark, 10-6, at Veterans Memorial Park on Saturday.

Not to be outdone, the Pilots (12-18) hit two doubles, two triples and a home run. Will Gorman (RIT) was responsible for three of Newark’s extra-base hits as he finished a single shy of the cycle. Gorman went 3-for-4 with two RBIs and two runs scored.

In three games against the DiamondDawgs (16-15) this season, Gorman is now 7-for-10 with two doubles, two triples and two home runs. The slugger from Nassau, N.Y., currently has the hottest bat on the team, hitting .440 since June 25.

Chris Rave (Herkimer C.C.) began the slugfest in the bottom of the first with a solo shot, his first of the season. He drove in another run in the third on a grounder to second base to give the ‘Dawgs a 2-0 lead.

Newark struck for four runs in the top of the fourth inning to take a two-run lead. Gorman’s double plated the first run, scoring Corey Lerche (Central Connecticut State), who led off with a base hit. Following a Gabe Levanti (Northeastern) RBI groundout, Anthony Spina (Amherst) legged out a triple to plate Gorman, and after the umpires convened, they awarded Spina home plate due to an errant relay throw that went out of play.

Four combined homers were hit in the fifth and sixth innings. Matt Johnson (South Dakota State) and Matt Pagano (Marist) tied the game at 4-4 in the bottom of the fifth with respective solo homers. Gorman then regained the lead, 6-5, with his team-leading third long ball of the season in the top of the sixth, only to have a two-run blast by Troy Scocca (Fairfield) put the DiamondDawgs up, 7-6, in the bottom half of the frame.

Pagano sealed the deal for the home club in the bottom of the eighth. Newark reliever Bret Viola (Stevens) loaded the bases with two straight walks. Anthony Herrera (Louisiana-Monroe) hit a grounder to short to drive in one and Pagano cleared the bases with a triple in the next at-bat.

In the top of the ninth, Charlie Sobieraski (Buffalo) was issued a one-out walk by his Buffalo teammate and Mohawk Valley reliever Blair Lakso (Buffalo). Willy Yahn (Connecticut) doubled to put both runners in scoring position. The Pilots then tacked on their sixth run via a Cody Wiktorski (St. John Fisher) sacrifice fly.

Like Gorman, Yahn finished the game with three hits as he went 3-for-5. Pagano and Sam Machonis (Florida Southern) each collected two hits apiece for the DiamondDawgs and Pagano drove in a season-high four runs.

Clayton Spiker (Saginaw Valley State) was handed the loss after giving up six runs in six innings, dropping him to 2-3 on the season. Marcus Failing (Herkimer C.C.) improved to 3-1 after surrendering five runs in six innings. Both starters fanned four batters.

Lakso his first save after striking out five in three innings of relief.

The Newark Pilots will visit division rival Elmira (22-11) on Sunday for a 5:05 p.m. contest at Dunn Field.