By David Spiegel
The State University of New York at New Paltz baseball team (3-10, 0-3 SUNYAC) dropped a pair of State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) contests to No. 3 SUNY Cortland (13-4, 3-0 SUNYAC) on Sunday at Hoy Field on the campus of Cornell University. The Red Dragons took a 5-1 decision in the first game before defeating the Hawks, 6-2, in the finale.
The Red Dragons took a sizable lead early in Sunday’s opener, taking a 4-0 lead after three innings. Third baseman Michael DeCarr and second baseman Bryan Mistretta put together back-to-back RBI hits in the second inning to give Cortland the first runs of the game. Designated hitter Chris Jackson capped off the early run with a two-run inside-the-park home run in the third to add to the Red Dragon lead.
The Hawks chipped away at the deficit by getting on the board in the bottom of the fifth. Back-to-back singles by senior third baseman Matt Prescia and senior first baseman Thomas Pinnola put runners on the corners before any outs were recorded. Senior designated hitter David Lostaglio brought the first Hawk run across with a sacrifice fly to center. Senior catcher Matt Kaldon was unable to keep the rally going, grounding into a double play in the next at bat.
Center fielder Zack Graczyk added another run for Cortland with an RBI single through the right side in the top of the seventh and final inning.
Senior starting pitcher Chris Chismar suffered the loss in game one, allowing a season-high five runs on eight hits while striking out six. Chismar is yet to strike out less than five batters in a game this season. Mike Hughes earned the victory for the Red Dragons, while Tyler Scott recorded the save.
Senior center fielder Matt Carr went 1-for-2 with a stolen base, while Lostaglio picked up the only RBI in his 1-for-2 effort. Prescia batted 1-for-3 and scored the lone Hawk run. Kaldon caught four Red Dragon runners attempting to steal bases.
Jackson led the Red Dragons with two RBI and a home run in his 1-for-3 outing. DeCarr went 2-for-3 with an RBI and two runs scored, while Mistretta and Graczyk picked up the other two RBI.
The Hawks got on the board first in the finale before forfeiting the lead in the following inning. Carr led off the home half of the first with a single, and then stole second in the next at bat. Sophomore right fielder Richard Guido followed with a single up the middle to advance Carr over to third. Senior left fielder Anthony Repetto flew out to right in the next at bat, but it was enough to bring Carr in from third to give the Hawks the early 1-0 lead.
Cortland fired back in the second, opening the inning with four straight singles to tie the game and load the bases. Mistretta added a sacrifice fly later in the inning to give the Red Dragons the lead. With runners on first and third in the third frame, Kaldon threw out shortstop John Adornetto at second. However, the play allowed left fielder Brian Barry to score from third and increase the Cortland lead to 3-1.
DeCarr opened the fourth with a double to left, chasing junior starting pitcher Chris Pyz from the game. With two outs and runners on the corners, a double steal advanced Mistretta to second, while allowing DeCarr to score from third. Graczyk followed with a single to bring Mistretta home and leave the Red Dragons with a 5-1 lead after four.
Each team added a run in the eighth inning, but the Hawks were unable to rally and eventually dropped the 6-2 decision in the neutral-site affair.
Pyz shouldered his first loss of the season after giving up four runs in three innings of work. Kyle Barkley improved to 3-0 after tossing 5.1 innings for Cortland and allowing just one run.
Carr went 2-for-3 with another stolen base for the Hawks. He also scored both New Paltz runs. Repetto went 1-for-3 with an RBI, while Prescia picked up his second multi-hit game of the year with a 2-for-4 outing.
First baseman Max Rosing had three hits for the Red Dragons, scoring a run in the effort. DeCarr went 2-for-3 with two runs and a stolen base in the finale.
The Hawks travel to The College at Brockport on Friday, March 30, to begin a three-game series with the Golden Eagles. The Hawks play their first game at Loren Campbell Memorial Field the following Tuesday, April 2nd, when they host SUNY Oneonta.