Elmira came out strong in their first game of the 2019 season as they took on the team that eliminated them from last year’s postseason. Mason Ruhlman, who had remembered making last year’s final out with a strikeout, came in and had a huge game driving in three and scoring two runs himself to give the Pioneers the win. Both teams made their first start of the season as the hum at historic Dunn Field was already at midseason form.
The first inning went quickly as both sides allowed only three batters. Despite some control issues for the Pioneers starter Noah Rubino a double play on a Noah Fisher pop out followed by a ground ball would mean no hard done to the Pioneers.
Elmira opened the scoring in the second as Ruhlman drove in a run and then would be walked home himself a few batters later in the second. One inning later Ruhlman would drive in his second RBI of the game to give the Pioneers a 3-0 lead.
After a strong pitching effort by starter Rubino through five innings, Elmira would bring in some relief from the bullpen as Steven Rossi came into the game. Rossi started off hot, but in three consecutive innings gave up a run to tie the game in the middle of the seventh, 3-3.
The Pios had their chances throughout the game, but in the seventh Ruhlman started off the inning with a base hit and would come around to score on a Quinn Buffington single to give Elmira the lead back, 4-3.
Rossi came back to the mound in the either and was able to get three quick out before the Pioneers came up again in the bottom of the eight and Ruhlman drove in another run on the night to put Elmira up 5-3. Rossi finished off the game in the ninth and the Pios earned win number one in front of the home crowd.
Elmira gets right back to it tonight as the Oneonta Outlaws come to town at 7:05 pm. There will be more exciting PGCBL action, FIREWORKS, FIREWORKS, FIREWORKS, and…..Free Tee Shirts! Make sure to come down to Dunn Field and check out all the action or call to reserve your tickets 607-734-2690!
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