Mohawks’ ninth-inning rally falls short 3-2 against Pilots

The Leader-Herald

AMSTERDAM – With a large crowd on hand, the Amsterdam Mohawks kicked off its 2014 Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League season Thursday night at Shuttleworth Park.

Despite outhitting the Newark Pilots and rallying in the bottom of the ninth, the Mohawks came up short in the final score, 3-2.

“I thought everything went well tonight,” Coach Keith Griffin said. “The only thing that went wrong was we didn’t get the win.”

Neither team managed a hit in the opening two innings, but the Pilots made the most of a lead-off walk by Tommy Wagner in the top of the third.

Braxton Wilks moved Wagner to third with his one-out single and stole second. Logan Boyher picked up the RBI on a fielder’s choice to give Newark an early 1-0 lead.

The Mohawks quickly got the run back in the bottom of the third.

Jack Czeszewski connected for a one-out single, but was eliminated from the base paths on Jon Pryor’s fielder’s choice grounder. Pryor moved to second on a wild pitch and tied the game on Kevin Guthrie’s RBI double into the left-field corner.

The Pilots got the lead back in the top of the sixth on Louis Silverio’s home run deep over the centerfield fence, making the score 2-1.

Newark extended its lead in the top of the seventh.

Wagner again worked his way on with a walk, stole second and moved to third on a wild pitch. He scampered home on Wilks’ infield single to build a 3-1 lead.

Amsterdam rallied back in the bottom of the ninth for a chance at a season-opening victory.

Joey Aiola led off the inning with a single and was joined on the bases by Czeszewski, who earned a one-out walk.

Kevin Guthrie kept the Mohawks’ hopes alive when he battled relief pitcher B.J. Nobles through a 13-pitch at bat to draw a walk and load the bases with two outs.

Aiola crossed the plate to cut the lead to 3-2, and Czeszewski and Guthrie moved up on a passed ball.

Nobles got out of a jam when Jake Salpietro popped out to right field to end the game.

Silverio paced the Pilots (1-0) with his home run, while Wilks had three singles on the night.

Czeszewski finished the night with two singles and a double for the Mohawks (0-1), while Guthrie had a double and an RBI and Josh Gardiner also doubled.

“We didn’t swing the bats real well, but it is the first night,” Griffin said. “We played hard and played a clean game. I thought we pitched well enough and did a lot of things well. We just didn’t get the hit when we had a chance to knock them in. But it was a hard fought game by both teams.”

Newark 3, Amsterdam 2

Newark Pilots001 001 010 – 3 4 0

Amsterdam Mohawks001 000 001 – 2 6 1

Springer, Imbro (7), Tidwell (7), Valcoviak (8), Nobles (9) and Boyher; Ashworth, Ward (6), Hackimer (8) and Logan.