By Brian Savard
NEW PALTZ – During a weekend in which rainy weather wreaked havoc on the State University of New York at New Paltz baseball team’s schedule, the Hawks were able to fit in a doubleheader on Saturday at Loren Campbell Memorial Field, splitting with The College at Brockport in their home-opening doubleheader. Brockport won game one, 8-1, while the Hawks countered with a 5-0 triumph in the nightcap of the State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) twinbill.
New Paltz moves to 9-12 overall and 1-4 in the SUNYAC. The Hawks are slated to play SUNY Oneonta next on the road on Tuesday, April 1, at 3 p.m. Brockport moves to 11-4 overall and 3-2 in SUNYAC action.
Game 1: Brockport 8, New Paltz 1
The Golden Eagles took advantage of 12 hits and five New Paltz errors in the opening game of the doubleheader while limiting the Hawks to just five base knocks.
After two scoreless innings, Brockport got on the board in the top of the third, as senior left fielder Mike Gianni plated junior shortstop Anthony Barbetto with a double to right field before eventually coming around to score on a dropped fly ball. Senior third baseman Corey Hamula made it a 3-0 game in the fourth with an RBI single, while junior catcher Shawn Peake gave Brockport a 4-0 cushion in the seventh by means of a sacrifice fly.
The Hawks finally produced a run in the eighth, as sophomore first baseman Chris Baltera blooped an RBI single into right field, plating junior third baseman Mike Sparacino.
Brockport added insurance in the ninth, scoring four times. Sophomore second baseman Wesley Burghardt launched a two-run homer to left to start the inning’s scoring, while the other two runs came by means of a bases-loaded hit by pitch and a bases-loaded fielding error, respectively.
Sophomore pitcher Christian Huertas was tagged with the loss, giving up three runs (two earned) off seven hits in 3 2/3 innings of work. Brockport’s senior pitcher Matthew Coleman earned the win, working eight innings and yielding one unearned run off five hits while striking out three.
Sophomore shortstop Andrew DiNardo paced the Hawk bats in game one with a 2-for-4 performance, while Burgardt’s 3-for-5 outing that included two RBI, a run scored and a home run keyed Brockport.
Game 2: New Paltz 5, Brockport 0
Senior pitcher Andrew Grann pitched a complete-game shutout in game two, hurling nine strikeouts while giving up just three hits.
New Paltz kicked off its scoring in the second, as sophomore catcher Tyler Bell pushed across Sparacino with an RBI knock to right. The Hawks then added insurance in the third, which began with DiNardo’s two-run single to center field. DiNardo came around to score on a defensive miscue with two outs before Baltera drove in Sparacino with a single through the right side to give the Hawks a 5-0 advantage.
Cloudy skies then gave way to rain, and the final few innings were played under steady rainfall. With concerns about fitting in the contest, Grann made quick work of Brockport in the seventh, striking out two batters before inducing a groundout to shortstop to end the game.
Grann, who was a model of efficiency in the game with just 82 pitches, moves to 2-2 on the season with the win. Senior pitcher Justin McCarthy shouldered the loss for Brockport, giving up five runs (three earned) off nine hits while striking out two.
DiNardo enjoyed yet another strong game offensively, batting 2-for-3 with two RBI, a double and a run scored. Junior right fielder Richard Guido and senior second baseman Kenny Gentile also had two hits for New Paltz in the nightcap. For Brockport, senior first baseman Dan Hurlimann led the way with a 2-for-3 performance that included a double.