Brett Houseal (Marist) was the latest Mohawk starter to turn in his season-best performance when he worked through seven scoreless innings en route to a 3-2 victory over the Cooperstown Hawkeyes in front of a 2,764 fans at Shuttleworth Park.
Amsterdam pounced on its opponent once again when they scored twice in the bottom of the first. Jude Vidrine (Lamar) started the frame with a single through the box off of left hander Conor Kerins (West Chester), Zach Shank (Marist) walked, and Josh Netheway slashed a ground-rule double over the fence in left-center to help the Hawks jump ahead 1-0.
Still in the first, Luke Maile (Kentucky) walked to load the bases before Parker Morin (Utah) popped a sacrifice fly into center, as each base runner advanced a bag, Amsterdam went on top 2-0.
Demarcus Henderson (Mississippi State) led off the second inning with a single and Josh Alexander (Utah) walked to put the first two runners on for the top of the order. After a couple of quick outs, Netheway pounded a ground ball up the middle, second baseman Ben Miller (Shippensburg) fielded behind second but had no chance to throw out the runner at first. As Henderson rounded third, Miller fired behind the runner but threw wide of the base and Henderson trotted home to put the Mohawks up 3-0 after two innings.
Houseal (4-0) retired the first eleven batters he faced and cruised through the first four innings. The only noise provided by the Cooperstown offense was when J.P. Sportsman (Central CT State) bounded a ball up the first baseline with two outs in the third. Houseal fielded with the glove and simultaneously collided with a hustling Sportman. The pair exchanged words as they trotted off the field, the discontent would resurface an inning later.
After a quick out in the top of the fifth, Houseal allowed a Nate Izzo (Tufts) double. Izzo stole third and scored on a Houseal wild pitch. With two outs and the bases clear, the righty plunked Sportman, as the centerfielder strolled to first he glared at the sophomore out of Marist before taking his base. On the next pitch he stole second. As he swiped third a couple of pitches later, Mohawks catcher Parker Morin’s throw skipped off of Matt Mack’s (Radford) glove and found left field, allowing Sportman to score and make it 3-2.
After Derrick Brewer (Radford) pitched a scoreless eighth, Abram Williams (Radford) came on for the ninth. Brian Aanderud (Cypress), the first batter of the last, slashed a 0-2 fastball into the right-field corner. Andrew Green (East Tennessee State), who had come on as a defensive replacement an inning prior, collected the ball out of the right-field corner and fired a strike to Shank at second base to cut down Aanderud trying to stretch the play into a double. Williams got the next two hitters to finalize his 10th save in 12 opportunities.
Amsterdam (21-12) totaled five hits and two errors as they picked up their 14th win in their last 16 games and their third victory over the Hawkeyes this week. Cooperstown (15-13) cracked four hits and committed a single miscue in the field. Friday’s Game was Amsterdam’s 24th over the past 22 days.
The Mohawks will host the Watertown Wizards tomorrow at 7:00.