PGCBL Daily Rundown - June 19, 2013

Watertown's Kevin Klaess (Cypress) pitched six strong innings at Newark on Tuesday night. This is Klaess in action last week at home versus Utica. Photo courtesy Watertown Rams/Warren Shelmidine

For all of the latest news stories on the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League and television highlights, go to our “Press” page here.

Note: Individual game box scores can be found linked on the scoreboard page which is part of the “Statistics” drop-down menu. The box scores are also linked on the statistics page for each team.

Last Night’s Scores
Elmira 4 Albany 1
Watertown 7 Newark 3 (10)
Cooperstown 10 Mohawk Valley 3
Glens Falls 6 Utica 1
Amsterdam 17 Adirondack 7

Tonight’s Games and Pitching Probables
Albany at Cooperstown, 5:00 PM
Kyle Pheland (Salve Regina) 1-0, 0.00 ERA vs. Cody Smith (Black Hawk) 0-0, 3.60 ERA

Mohawk Valley at Utica, 7:00 PM
TBA vs. Monte Reese (Georgia Gwinett) 0-0, 4.50 ERA

Adirondack at Watertown, 7:00 PM
Joe Borelli (Fairfield Dickinson) 0-1, 54.00 vs. Anthony Magovney (Buffalo) 0-1, 3.60 ERA

Elmira at Amsterdam, 7:05 PM
TBA vs. Dylan Dwyer (Kentucky) 0-1, 6.75 ERA

Newark at Glens Falls, 7:05 PM
Andrew Sanders (Ithaca) 0-0, 3.18 ERA vs. Rick Morales (Siena) 0-1, 6.23 ERA

*Through the first two weeks of the season, the full schedule on a given day has been completed just five times – meaning each game has finished with no rain outs and/or suspensions.

*Tuesday night wasn’t a good night for the home teams. For the first time this season, the visitors won all five scheduled games.  Here are the road records for each team in the PGCBL…Albany 3-0, Elmira 3-0, Glens Falls 4-1, Mohawk Valley 4-1, Cooperstown 2-2, Amsterdam 2-3, Adirondack 1-2, Newark 1-3, Watertown 1-5 and Utica 0-4. Watertown earned its first road win of the season last night.

*As we begin the third week of the season and stand in the middle of the second full week, Cooperstown’s Eann Cox (Black Hawk) leads the league with three wins. Cox is 3-0 for the Hawkeyes after Tuesday night’s win at Mohawk Valley. The Lewis University-bound hurler tossed a two-hitter against the DiamondDawgs and conceded one single in the second and another in the seventh. Cox was a two-time All-Arrowhead Conference selection at Black Hawk College, an NJCAA Division I school in Moline, Ill.

*Congratulations to the Albany Dutchmen. Perfect Game’s Allan Simpson has rated the Dutchmen ninth in the first Summer Top 30 poll of the season. Perfect Game will release national rankings each week of the summer between now and mid-August. Albany is ranked for the first time in the four-year history of the franchise. Amsterdam finished last summer ranked third in the nation and was high as second. The full Summer Top 30 poll is here.

*Elmira’s Danny Britt (Trinity Christian) quieted the Albany bats on Tuesday night to help the Pioneers grab a 4-1 win. The 6-foot-5 starter pitched a five-hitter over seven innings and held the Dutchmen to just five hits. Britt walked one and struck out five. The rising senior at Trinity Christian College carried a no-hitter into the fifth inning. He retired 15 of Albany’s first 17 batters and sat down 13 in a row after a lead-off walk issued to Bradley Noland (North Alabama) to begin the bottom of the first.

*Albany’s Matt Gallup (Hudson Valley C.C.) suffered the hard-luck loss to Elmira. He matched Britt with five scoreless innings to start the game. Gallup faced 18 batters through the first five innings and only conceded two singles to Elmira’s Chris Knott (East Stroudsburg). Gallup seated seven in a row between the first and third innings and then recorded five-straight outs between the third and fifth. Elmira knocked Gallup out of the game with three runs in the sixth, just one was earned.

*While Elmira’s Britt and Albany’s Gallup dueled on the mound, Albany’s Chris Bianchi (Trinity, Texas) went up against Elmira’s Chris Knott (East Stroudsburg) on the bases. Knott reached base four times on Tuesday with three hits and one walk. Chris Bianchi caught the entire game for Albany. On the base paths at Bob Bellizzi Field, Bianchi cut down Knott twice attempting to steal though Knott still managed to record two stolen bases.

*The Elmira trio of Danny Britt (Trinity Christian), Brandon Diorio (Ithaca) and Chris Gould (Saint Rose) held Albany to five singles and one double. The Dutchmen had entered the game with a league-leading .291 batting average. Jonathan Torres (Cypress) was the only Albany swinger with two hits.

*Matt Burch’s Pios are 3-0 away from Dunn Field with wins at Newark (13 innings), Glens Falls and Albany.

*Newark’s Will Spitzfaden (Southeast Missouri State) made his third start of the season last night against Watertown at home. The reigning PGCBL Pitcher of the Week turned in his longest performance of the summer as he pitched into the 10th inning in an eventual 7-3 defeat. He is the first pitcher in league history to throw more than nine innings in a single game. Through three starts, the St. Louis, Mo., native leads the league with 25.1 innings pitched.

*Here’s more on Spitzfaden’s mind-boggling performance. He induced 19 ground outs overall. Between the fourth and ninth innings, the Newark starter faced 20 batters, just two over the minimum. During that time, he never saw more than four batters in a single inning. The rising junior from Southeast Missouri also seated eight hitters in a row between the sixth and eighth innings.

*While Spitzfaden was setting down Watertown batters, Kevin Klaess (Cypress) and Logan Grant (Creighton) were working cleanly through the Newark line-up. Klaess conceded two earned runs and struck out three over six innings. The Watertown starter held up a 3-3 tie in the sixth when he forced Newark to strand the potential go-ahead run on third base. Reliever Logan Grant entered in the seventh and mowed through Newark batters He retired seven of the eight men he faced and allowed only a two-hit single in the bottom of the ninth.

*With all of the ground balls induced by starting pitcher Will Spitzfaden (Southeast Missouri State), Newark’s middle infielders had a heavy workload. Second baseman Jeff Edwards (Valparaiso) logged eight assists and one putout in nine chances while second baseman Sam Fox (Pomona-Pitzer) recorded five putouts and five assists; neither committed an error. First baseman Matt McKinnon (Penn) had 18 putouts.

*Watertown improved to 2-0 in extra-innings this year under head coach Paul Alteri. The Rams edged Cooperstown, 4-3, last Thursday on a 10th-inning fielders’ choice from Collin Theroux (Nevada). Last night, the Rams scored four times in the 10th to pull away from Newark. In each extra-inning victory, reliever Logan Grant (Creighton) has earned the winning decision.

*With the Tuesday night home loss, Newark dropped to 0-2 in extra-inning games this season. Both games took place at Colburn Park.

*Newark’s Matt McKinnon (Penn) nearly provided for all of the Pilots offense on two swings. He belted a two-run home run in his first at-bat in the second inning to give Newark a 2-0 lead. In his next at-bat, McKinnon swatted a one-out double. The next batter, Jake Hanson (Valparaiso) doubled McKinnon home with Newark’s third and final run.

*The top of the line-up cards for head coaches Paul Alteri (Watertown) and Mike Armstrong (Newark) proved to be very important on Tuesday night at Colburn Park. Watertown’s 1-2-3 hitters – Joe Moroney (Kansas), Dominic Lopez (Texas A&M – Corpus Christi) and Kyle Lombardo (St. John’s) combined to go 7-for-14 with six RBI and three runs scored. For Newark’s top two hitters, Jeff Edwards (Valparaiso) and Sam Fox (Pomona-Pitzer) each boasted two hits; as for that matter did eighth and ninth-place hitters Matt McKinnon (Penn) and Jake Hanson (Valparaiso).

*The term “Shutteworth Slugfest” has been bandied about over the last few years in games where teams take turns bopping balls over the “Chain Monster” at Amsterdam’s Shuttleworth Park which often result in high-scoring affairs. One may need to also include “Smith Slugfest” soon. The Robert S. Smith Sports Complex in Boonville, home of the Adirondack Trail Blazers, has produced more than a few high-scoring games this season including a record-setting 18-15 game between Adirondack and Utica last week. Tuesday night, Amsterdam and Adirondack combined to score 24 runs on 30 hits and the two teams each blasted out two home runs in a 17-7 Mohawks’ victory. The lowest scoring game in Boonville this year was a 6-1 Mohawk Valley win on June 9. In three of five games, the winning team has pushed across at least nine runs.

*Amsterdam’s offensive explosion on Tuesday night was greatly helped by returning starters Kyle Barrett (Kentucky) and Dylan Smith (Auburn), both who have missed time due to injury. Both SEC sluggers slammed their first home runs of the season. Barrett went 3-for-5 with two RBI and two runs scored as Amsterdam’s lead-off hitter. Barrett smacked a two-run home run in the third inning, one frame after Dylan Smith launched a two-run home run that gave Amsterdam a 2-0 lead. Smith, a 10.0-rated prospect by Perfect Game USA, was 2-for-3 with three RBI and three runs scored.

*The Mohawks set a franchise record in the PGCBL era with 17 runs scored on Tuesday night. The Mohawks plated 16 scores apiece in two different games last year and defeated Cooperstown 16-1 in 2011 however had not reached 17 in a PGCBL game. The last time Amsterdam scored 17 runs was in the opening game of the 2010 NYCBL Championship Series against Elmira. It is believed the franchise record for runs scored in a single game is 20; those were tallied in a 2010 game against Cooperstown.

*One of the most important points in the Adirondack-Amsterdam game may have come in the bottom of the first inning. The Trail Blazers packed the Boonville sacks against Amsterdam starter Trey Wingenter (Auburn) with two outs. WIngenter was able to induce a ground ball and get out of the inning unscathed. Adirondack did manage to grab a 1-0 lead in the second on a Riley Moonan (Fairleigh Dickinson) RBI double though the game may have gone differently had Adirondack gotten on the board in the first.

*As was mentioned above, there were 30 hits in the Adirondack-Amsterdam game. Eleven players between both teams recorded multi-hit games and 14 players overall had at least one hit. Eight of Amsterdam’s nine starters had at least one hit and so did five Trail Blazer starters. Amsterdam’s Kyle Barrett (Kentucky) and Brian Ruby (Binghamton) each had three hits apiece as did Riley Moonan (Fairleigh Dickinson), Tom Bouck (NJIT) and Bobby Slagle (Villanova).

*Following Tuesday night’s offensive explosion, Adirondack and Amsterdam are first and second in the league in home runs. Adirondack has a PGCBL best eight dingers while Amsterdam has hit six home runs.

*Six different Trail Blazers have dinged home runs this season. Luke Emling (Villanova) and Tom Bouck (NJIT) are tied for the team lead with two belts each. Four other Adirondack swingers have hit one home run.

*While Albany is off to a 5-1 start and Cooperstown is currently 6-2, Glens Falls might be the hottest team in the league. John Mayotte’s Golden Eagles are 4-1 in their last five games with the lone loss coming in a one-run decision against Amsterdam. Three of the four wins have been away from the friendly confines of East Field in Hometown U.S.A. Keep in mind, the Golden Eagles are still waiting on the arrival of Big XII Newcomer of the Year Jake Matthys, Brooks Wallace Shortop of the Year Award Semifinalist Austin Fisher and reliever Jared Moore, all three went to the Super Regionals with Kansas State.

*Reigning PGCBL Player of the Week Michael Pierson (App. State) extended his league best hitting streak to nine games on Tuesday night with an RBI single against Glens Falls. Pierson has had at least one hit in each game that Utica has played this season. As I’ve noted, K’Shawn Smith (Stetson) has been a beneficiary of that. Smith has scored at least one run in eight of Utica’s nine games and he leads the league with 13 runs scored.

*A sneaky pitchers’ duel took place on Tuesday night at Utica’s Donovan Stadium where Ryan Davis (LeMoyne) of Glens Falls opposed Utica’s Nathan Hunt (Wagner). Davis struck out six over 4.2 innings and conceded one unearned run on four hits. Hunt meanwhile lasted six frames and fired a four-hitter. He allowed two unearned runs, walked three and struck out three.

*Kevin Cowan (William Paterson) has so far made a successful return to Glens Falls. Cowan pitched out of the bullpen for Glens Falls in 2011 following his first season at UAlbany. The Roselle, N.J., native transferred to William Paterson (N.J.) and made his Division III debut this past spring. Cowan was solid in relief for the Green and Gold on Tuesday night. He inherited two runners on base in the fifth inning of a one-run game. Cowan stranded both and spun 3.1 frames of one-hit relief. He fanned five and allowed Glens Falls to open up a five-run cushion. Cowan is currently 2-0 with a 1.04 earned run average in four appearances. He has struck out 11 and walked two in 8.2 innings.

Did you know? One fact about a random PGCBL player each day…
*Elmira relief pitcher Brandon Diorio (Ithaca) was an all-state kicker at Union-Endicott High School. Diorio set school records for most field goals in a single game (three), season (six) and career (12). He kicked game-winning field goals in back-to-back games during his senior season. His 12 career field goals were the most of any U-E kicker since 1976. Brandon was named fifth team all-state in Class AA as a junior and third team all-state in Class A as a senior.

Quick hits on tonight’s games…
*Newark makes a significant mid-week road trips to Glens Falls.  The Pilots will undergo a near 3.5-hour journey from Colburn Park to East Field that will take the team from I-90 East to I-87 North. Newark was home at Colburn Park last night against Watertown and fell in 10 innings. Following the game, the Pilots will re-board the bus for a home twin bill against Cooperstown on Thursday beginning at 5:00 p.m.  Newark is making its first trip to Glens Falls since the opening round of the 2012 PGCBL playoffs.

*Elmira out-lasted Amsterdam, 7-6, last week in a rain-soaked thriller last Thursday night at Dunn Field. Elmira suffered back-to-back heartbreaking losses to end a four-game homestand however bounced back with a solid performance all around in a 4-1 win over previously unbeaten Albany on Tuesday night at Bob Bellizzi Field. Amsterdam has bounced back itself from a slow start to win its last two games. In the tightly-packed PGCBL East, the Mohawks are just two games back of third-place Glens Falls. Elmira has not won at Shuttleworth Park in the PGCBL era; Amsterdam holds a 4-0 home record against Elmira.

*Adirondack and Watertown open up a home-and-home tonight in the northern portion of the North Country at Watertown’s Alex T. Duffy Fairgrounds. The Rams and Trail Blazers will play a single game tonight and then meet tomorrow for a twin bill at Boonville’s Robert S. Smith Sports Complex beginning at 4:30 p.m. Adirondack edged out Watertown, 9-8, on Opening Night to give the Trail Blazers their first-ever PGCBL victory in their first PGCBL game. The divisional standings end more meaning to tonight’s game. Following last night’s results, both teams are tied for second place in the PGCBL West, two games behind first-place Elmira. Whichever team comes away with a 2-1 record after the next two days will move into sole possession of second place.

*A battle of first place in the PGCBL East takes place this evening in Cooperstown between the Hawkeyes and nationally-ranked Albany Dutchmen. The Dutchmen earned their first national ranking in team history yesterday when Perfect Game’s Summer Top 30 poll was released. Albany dropped a tough 4-1 home decision to Elmira last night in its first game as a ranked team. Dan Shwam’s Cooperstown club has been one of the best teams in the league not named Albany. The Hawkeyes’ six wins are tied for the most in the league with Glens Falls and two losses are the second fewest behind Albany. The winner will earn first place in the PGCBL East, at least for tonight.

*Like Adirondack and Watertown, Mohawk Valley and Utica open up a home-and-home series tonight. The Brewers and the DiamondDawgs play at Utica’s Donovan Stadium this evening and then will travel to Vet’s Park in Little Falls on Thursday for a double dip with first pitch at 5:05 p.m. This will be the first meeting of the season between the Brewers and DiamondDawgs, two teams separated by just two exits on the New York State Thruway and just over 23 miles on Route 5 South. Both teams are looking to get back on the winning track after Tuesday night home defeats to Cooperstown and Glens Falls.

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