LITTLE FALLS, N.Y. – The Mohawk Valley Diamond Dawgs played an exhibition game on Wednesday morning and won that game 7-5. Who would have thought their nightcap at Veteran's Memorial Park against Glens Falls would end the same way?
While Diamond Dawgs starter Josh Arnold (Petersburg, NJ/Fairfield) would leave after only one inning of work, his relievers got the job done for him and the bats provided the support Mohawk Valley needed, as the Diamond Dawgs walked away with the same 7-5 score that they produced in seven innings in the morning game.
Arnold would have an inauspicious start to the game, allowing a walk and two singles to quickly put himself in a bases-loaded jam with no one out. Dan Lowndes would bring two home rather quickly, as a hot grounder squirted out to left field, scoring Brian Uliana (Bethlehem, PA/Rider) and Mark Powell (Middletown, RI/College of St. Rose). Luckily for Arnold, he would get the next two Dragons out to end the top of the first inning.
The game would start just as inauspiciously for Glens Falls starter Duncan Amrein (Lake Villa, IL/Bellarmine), if not more so. Amrein would see the Mohawk Valley scoring start with an error by Powell would score Ben Porter (Newton, MA/Columbia). A walk just one batter later to Russ Olive (Chelmsford, MA/UMass-Lowell) would quickly pit Amrein in a first-and-second jam with just one out. Just two batters later, Austin Pollack (Harrison, NY/Hofstra) would tie up the score on a looping fly ball to left-center field that would score Clay Koniencki (Schwenksville, PA/Monmouth). Another walk, this time to Johnny Mayer (/Norfolk State), would give the Diamond Dawgs the lead, as the bases-loaded free base would bring home Olive. The third straight walk by Amrein would not only allow the Diamond Dawgs to bat around, but also score Zack Coker (Tuscaloosa, AL/Alabama). Yet another run would score on an RBI single by Joe Engel (Downers Grove, IL/Columbia). The inning would mercifully for Amrein on a fly out to right field, but not before 11 Mohawk Valley batters came to the plate and five runs scored to give the Diamond Dawgs a 5-2 lead after just one inning.
The Dragons would get two runs back in the top of the second, as a lazy fly ball to left by Powell would score Jared Drizin (Las Vegas, NV/Bucknell). That would be the end for Arnold after just 1 and 1/3 innings, and he would be replaced by Crandall Poore (Gray, GA/Middle Georgia State). A sacrifice fly by Ryan Beamish (Brentwood, TN/Lee) would bring the Mohawk Valley lead back down to one, as the fly ball to left field would score Uliana. However, Poore would strike out the next Dragon, Dan Lowndes (Poughkeepsie, NY/Siena) to keep the Diamond Dawgs' lead at one.
A bouncing ball to the Glens Falls shortstop would bring the Mohawk Valley lead back to two, as the fielder's choice from would score Olive. However, Coker would fly out to center field to end the Mohawk Valley threat.
The Dragons would keep the Diamond Dawgs within earshot in the top of the third, as a long fly ball all the way to the center field wall by Drizin would score Phoenix Hernandez (Brooklyn, NY/Southern New Hampshire).
Yet again, Mohawk Valley would oblige, this time in the bottom of the fourth on a deep sacrifice fly by Pollack would score Olive. However, a ground out to second base by Coker would keep the lead at two for Mohawk Valley, 7-5.
From there, pitchers would rule the game, keeping hitters on both sides silent. Johann Doerrer (Dolgeville, NY/Mohawk Valley CC), coming off a great outing in which he struck out all three Adirondack Trail Blazers he faced on Tuesday, would relieve Poore in the eighth and strike out two of the three batters he faced in the inning. Meanwhile, on the other side, Glens Falls reliever Ryan Cummings (Saratoga Springs, NY/St. Joseph's of Vermont) would strike out his first three Diamond Dawgs and remain perfect through two innings of work.
After striking out another two Dragons, Doerrer would find himself in a second-and-third jam in the eighth, which would get him replaced by Zachary Vennaro (New York Mills, NY/Mount Olive), who picked up the save in Tuesday night's game.
Vennaro would come out in the ninth and continue to baffle Glens Falls, striking out all three Dragons he saw in the inning to put the game away and pick up his second save in as many nights.
Arnold would pick up the win for the Diamond Dawgs (7-3), who remain neck-and-neck with Albany for first place in the Eastern Division. Amrein would be saddled with the loss for Glens Falls (3-6).
The Diamond Dawgs are back in action on Thursday at Siena Field for a battle for the top of the Eastern Division standings with the Albany Dutchmen. Glens Falls will head back to East Field to try to stop their three-game losing streak against another team with a big losing streak: the Utica Blue Sox, who have lost six in a row.