Pilots fall short against Watertown 5-4

Newark nearly earns walk-off win in ninth

Newark, NY —The Newark Pilots (8-14) drop their fifth  game in a row, losing 5-4 to the Watertown Rams (11-10) on Monday at Colburn Park. This win extends the Rams win streak to a season-high six games.

With runners on first and third and only one out, Newark’s David Vandercook (Columbia) grounded into a 6-4-3 double play to shut down the Pilots’ rally. Trailing 5-3 entering the bottom of the ninth, Jeff Edwards (Valparaiso) led off inning with a single. Edwards later cut the deficit to one after scoring on a wild pitch from Watertown reliever Matt Hennie (St. John’s). However, Hennie would earn his first save of the season by inducing the game-ending double play.

The Pilots took an early 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first. Sam Fox (Pomona-Pitzer) doubled and later scored on a sacrifice fly by Vandercook.

The Rams responded in the top of second to take a 3-1 lead. J.J. Wagner (Pacific) and Austin Lueck (South Florida) reached base safely on an error and walk respectively. Collin Theroux (Nevada) homered off the scoreboard in left field to give Watertown a two-run lead.

Newark would tie the game by scoring one run each in the second and third innings. Scott Matthews (Washington College) drove in a run in the second and Vandercook tied the game at 3-3 in the third on a throwing error by Watertown shortstop Bryce Greager (Chandler Gilbert C.C). The throw pulled first baseman Brad Rush (St. John Fisher) off the bag, allowing Steve Laurino (Marist) to reach base safely.

The Rams regained the lead in the fifth. Joe Moroney (Kansas) drove in Watertown’s fourth run with a RBI double. In the seventh inning, Theroux scored the eventual game-winning run on a wild pitch.

Will Spitzfaden (Southeast Missouri State) pitched eight full innings, giving up three earned runs. For the fourth time in five starts, Spitzfaden (1-3) pitched at least eight innings. He also fanned a game-high four batters. Fox, Matthews and Max Rosing (Cortland) each recorded two hits for the Pilots.

Joe Adel (South Florida) earned his third win of the season, remaining perfect at 3-0. He allowed three runs on six hits and tied the league record with four hit batters in a single game.

The Rams travel back home to face the Adirondack Trail Blazers on Tuesday while the Pilots travel to Elmira for a divisional face-off at Dunn Field. Newark will be back at Colburn Park on Wednesday, July 3rd to host the Albany Dutchmen. Don’t miss the Weenie Wednesday promotional night where all hot dogs are a dollar.