Filed by the Albany Dutchmen:
The Albany Dutchmen overcame a pair of Amsterdam Mohawks home runs to claim a 7-4 victory in the home finale on Wednesday at Bellizzi Field.
The Dutchmen jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning, which began when Ernie Clement (Virginia) clubbed a triple into the gap. After Adam Lee (Lipscomb) was hit by a pitch, Sean Aspinall (Azusa Pacific) looped a double into right field to score Clement. The second run of the inning came in on a Cameron Miller (Baylor) sacrifice fly to center field.
Amsterdam trimmed the deficit to 2-1 in the top of the third inning. Jack Czeszewski (Illinois State) singled to begin the inning, and back-to-back singles from Jake Salpietro (Fairfield) and Marcus Carson (Kentucky) brought Czeszewski to the plate.
The Dutchmen re-extended the lead with two more runs in the fifth inning, where the offense started on a one-out walk to Lee, who was then pinch ran for by Dave Vaccaro (Radford). Albany loaded the bases with an Aspinall single and a Nick Jewett (Trinity University) single. Miller recorded his second sacrifice fly of the game to bring Vaccaro home, and pinch runner Will Miller (College of the Albemarle) scored on a two-out single from Justin Brock (Franklin Pierce).
Amsterdam battled back to once again cut the deficit, getting a solo home run from Alex DeBellis (Lynn) in the top of the sixth inning to trim the Albany lead to 4-2.
Once again, the Dutchmen answered an Amsterdam score with a pair of runs, with this pair coming in the bottom of the sixth inning. Danny Hrbek (Radford) drilled a one-out double, which was followed by a Clement RBI single. Clement would come around to score on a groundout from Will Miller.
The Dutchmen scoring concluded in the bottom of the seventh inning. Nick Morton (Washington and Jefferson) led off the inning with a double down the right field line, and scored on Albany’s third sacrifice fly of the game, this one provided by James Locklear (Rider).
The Mohawks were able to plate two runs in the ninth, but could not close the gap. The first run scored in bizarre fashion. With Brendan Tracy (Fairfield) on first base, Blake Logan (Auburn) clubbed a ball to deep left field. Clement reached over the wall and nearly made the catch before the ball landed for a home run. However, Tracy had returned to first base, believing the ball was caught. Logan passed him, and was ruled out with one run scoring. Salpietro ended the scoring with an RBI groundout to plate Czeszewski.
Albany used four pitchers on the night — Chris Amorosi (Siena), Nick DiLeo (Wagner), Steve Ghiardi (Millersville), and Jamie Young (Lipscomb). Ghiardi earned the win, and Young tossed the final three innings to pick up the save.
The Dutchmen enter the postseason on Thursday, battling the Mohawk Valley Diamond Dawgs in a one-game series in Little Falls. The winner of that game will advance to the East Division Finals, beginning Friday in Amsterdam against the Mohawks.