LITTLE FALLS, N.Y. – A combined three-hitter from Newark’s pitching staff and a pair of home runs sparked a 6-0 victory for the Pilots over the Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs Thursday night at Veteran’s Memorial Park.
Pilots (7-10) starter Logan Harasta (Buffalo) tossed 5.1 innings of scoreless ball to earn his first win of the season (1-0). He fanned five on 88 pitches to extend his team lead to 19 strikeouts on the season.
Blake Brailsford (BYU), Kevin Berge (St. John Fisher) and Vinny Martin (Iona) did not give up a hit and allowed only one DiamondDawg to reach base safely in 3.2 combined innings of relief. Berge struck out a pair in two innings of work.
Will Gorman (RIT) and Frankie Gregoire (Marist) hit solo home runs in back-to-back innings to give Newark a 2-0 lead through five. Gorman, who led all batters with three hits and two RBIs in the game, knocked his first long ball of the season out of the park in right center to make it 1-0 in the fourth. Gregoire matched the feat in the fifth with his first homer to double the lead.
Gorman padded the cushion to three runs in the sixth with an RBI double following a two-out walk to Willy Yahn (Connecticut) issued by Mohawk Valley (9-10) starter Marc Iseneker (St. John Fisher).
Iseneker was tagged with the loss and fell to 0-2 on the season. He pitched seven innings, allowing three runs on four hits. He struck out a game-high eight batters on 100 pitches.
In the bottom of the sixth, JD Osbourne (Polk State) tripled with one out to chase Harasta. However, Brailsford stranded Osbourne at third to preserve the shutout by inducing a pair of fly outs to end the inning. Osbourne was the only DiamondDawg to reach third base on the night.
Newark struck again in the eight to make it a 4-0 advantage. Cody Wiktorski (St. John Fisher) singled and stole both second and third base before Yahn drove him home on a fly-ball double to left field.
Wiktorski swiped a season-high three bases and now has eight on nine attempts this season.
Michael Lanza (Bryant) and Kyle Norman (San Francisco) each drove in a run in the ninth with their own RBI doubles before Martin set down the Mohawk Valley side in order in the bottom half of the frame to close the contest.
The Pilots return to home on Friday, June 26 to host the Victor RailRiders (8-7) in the first half of a weekend home-and-home series. First pitch at Colburn Park is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. On Saturday, June 27, the two teams head to Victor High School to close the series at 5:05 p.m.