The Newark Pilots (27-21) dropped their final regular season matchup with Elmira, 3-1 at Colburn Park on Friday night. The loss drops the Pilots to fourth place in the West division with two regular season games remaining.
“The guys battled hard tonight,” Pilots head coach Chris Edmondson said. “We just ran into a tough pitcher. We just have to keep moving forward and not dwell on it because we might see them again [in the playoffs].”
Elmira got the scoring started in in the first inning scoring runs on an RBI single from Troy Dixon (Samford) and a groundout from Rob Perteet (Samford) to make it 2-0. Those would be the only runs Newark starter Ryan Wesson (Northeast Miss. C.C.) in his two innings of work.
Wesson was limited to 35 pitches in the outing with the playoffs approaching, but showed a good changeup that led to his two strikeouts. Quinton Logan (Hinds C.C.) would come in after Wesson and struggled with command, but only allowed one hit and one run over four innings of long-relief.
Logan would be followed by Tysen Fischlin (Skagit Valley C.C.) who struck out two in a scoreless inning of work. The Pilots bullpen has worked fifteen innings over the last three games and has only allowed one run.
“Our pitchers have been doing a really good job lately,” Edmondson said. “They’re coming out of the bullpen and throwing strikes, which is exactly what we need them to do. It’s nice two or three reliable guys to come in and keep us in games.”
The Pilots scored their lone run in the fifth, after an error extended the innings Ching-Wei Sen (Vanung) roped a single up the middle to score Dan Vucovich (Holy Cross) making the score 3-1. However, that was the only mistake made by Elmira starter Sean Hjelle (Kentucky) who threw eight innings of one-run ball to earn the win.
Newark will travel to Mohawk Valley on Saturday before hosting the Utica Blue Sox in the final game of the regular season on Sunday.