It began as a pitcher’s duel at Shuttleworth Park on Wednesday evening and ended as the Mohawks ran away from the Pilots with with their 20th victory in their last 24 games. Zach Shank (Marist) was 5-5 for with and R.B.I and two runs scored as the Mohawks tallied all of their runs in the fifth inning or later to post an 8-3 victory in front of 843 spectators at Shuttleworth Park.
Justin D’Amato (St. John Fisher) started for Newark and was marvelous over the first five innings, the southpaw allowed just a single run, three hits, and he struck out 10. So when Newark Head Coach Chris Ebright popped out of the dugout and lifted his 5’9” lefty after allowing a pair of singles to start the sixth, the Mohawk offense took advantage.
The first man out of the Newark pen, Andrew Tidwell (Saginaw Valley State), got the first two outs of the frame and then lost control. The righty hit Matt Mack (Radford) to load the bases, allowed a Josh Alexander (Utah) run-scoring single, and then plunked Brad Picha (Paris J.C.) to force in second run of the inning, allowing the Mohawks to grab a 3-2 lead.
The Hawks did not look back as they pushed across three more runs in the seventh and two in the eighth to run away with the win.
Leiter faced trouble for the first time in the fifth when he allowed a one-out double to Jacob Starnes (UT Dallas). The next batter, Michael Bolling (Lewis), stroked a double down the line in right, Andrew Green (East Tennessee State) snatched it up and started a 9-4-6-2 putout to nail Starnes at the plate and keep the game scoreless.
In the bottom of the fifth, Picha smashed his second homer of the summer and the Mohawks had the lead. Newark came back with a two-run blast from Ray Delvalle (Kentucky Wesleyan) in the sixth to give the Pilots their only lead before the Mohawks took control for good.
Chuck Schlegel (Wake Forest, 1-0) picks up his first win of the season and Matt Frahm (Lewis) is pinned with the loss (3-3).
Amsterdam moves to 27-14 and remains atop the East Division while Newark slides to 22-19 and is remains solidly in second place in the West.
Amsterdam travels to play the Wizards on Thursday for a 7:00 first pitch in Watertown.
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