The Times
  • PGCBL: DiamondDawgs win playoff opener


    David Del Grande’s two-out, two-run double broke a tie in the 11th inning Friday and the Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs defeated Amsterdam’s Mohawks 5-3 in the first game of their best-of-three playoff series at Shuttleworth Park.

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    David Del Grande’s two-out, two-run double broke a tie in the 11th inning Friday and the Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs defeated Amsterdam’s Mohawks 5-3 in the first game of their best-of-three Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League playoff series at Shuttleworth Park.
    The DiamondDawgs played from behind to the game in the eighth inning and again in the ninth. They never led at until Del Grande delivered his third hit of the night with the bases loaded against Chase Williamson.
    Williamson owned three wins and two saves against Mohawk Valley as the Mohawks compiled a 10-2 record against their neighbors during the regular season. The DiamondDawgs, however, had scored against Williamson in each of his last three appearances. The all-star right-hander from Auburn University entered the game with a 3-1 lead in the ninth inning and allowed four runs over three innings Friday.
    The 11th inning started with Williamson walking Mark Stuckey. Williamson also walked Jonathan Scott with one out and a wild pitch moved the runners into scoring position. After Joe Carcone flew out to right field, the Mohawks opted to intentionally walk Tyler Heck whose two-run single against Williamson had sent the game to extra innings. Del Grande, who already had two hits and an RBI in the game, then drilled a double to left field and drove home a pair of Mohawk Valley runs.
    DiamondDawgs closer Sal Lisanti, who took losses in four regular season games against Amsterdam, got the first two outs in the bottom of the 11th. After walking Giuseppe Papaccio, Lisanti struck Zak Colby out as the potential tying run and ended the game.
    Lisanti entered the game in the bottom of the eighth and pitched 3 2/3 innings for the victory.
    Williamson had retired the first two batters he faced and was one out away from saving the best-of-three series’ opening game when he allowed a single to Scott. Williamson then hit Tom Valichka and Carcone with pitches and loaded the bases. Scott and Valichka scored on Heck’s single to center field and the DiamondDawgs pulled even in what could have been their final at-bat.
    Starting pitchers Rocky McCord for Amsterdam and Cameron Sorgie for Mohawk Valley kept the game scoreless for 6 1/2 innings. Each team missed chances to score early in the game and each had a runner thrown out at the plate while the game remained scoreless. Amsterdam had runners at second and third with one out in the second inning and loaded the bases with one out in the third; each time Sorgie escaped the jam. The DiamondDawgs left the bases loaded in the second inning and had Del Grande thrown out trying to score on a hit by Jack Morrow in the sixth.
    Amsterdam caught a break in the seventh inning and took a 1-0 lead. Scott Heath doubled with two outs and Sorgie struck Keaton Flint out. The ball got away from Scott on the third strike to Flint and late-season addition reached base to extend the inning. Heath then scored on a an infield hit by Ed Charlton.
    Page 2 of 2 - Carcone singled against Amsterdam reliever Connor Kaden to start the eighth inning. After advancing on a bunt and a wild pitch, Carcone scored on a hit by Del Grande.
    Nathan Harrell walked two Mohawks in the bottom of the eighth and turned the ball over to Aaron Casper with one out. Brian Ruby’s single loaded the bases and the DiamondDawgs immediately called on Lisanti. Lisanti had a 1-2 count on Josh Nethaway when Amsterdam manager Keith Griffin went to his bench and sent Matt MacDowell up to pinch hit. McDowell was hit by the first pitch he took from Lisanti and Amsterdam took a 2-1 lead as Colby trotted home. A sacrifice fly hit by Heath gave Amsterdam a two-run lead and the Mohawks had a chance to add to that when Flint singled to center field. Stuckey delivered a strong throw to the plate and the inning ended with Scott tagging Ruby out at the plate.
    Left fielder Eric Helmrich had thrown Flint out trying to score one inning earlier.
    Sorgie, who lost his lone decision in three starts against Amsterdam during the regular season, allowed eight hits and two walks while striking out nine batters over seven innings.
    McCord allowed five hits and fanned seven DiamondDawgs in seven scoreless innings. He had a win and a no decision in two previous starts against Mohawk Valley, allowing one earned run in six innings each time.
    Morrow and Scott each added two hits to Del Grande’s three. Ruby, Papaccio, Charlton and D.J. Hoagboon all had two hits for Amsterdam.
    Having dropped their final two decisions of the regular season — including one against the DiamondDawgs — the top-seeded Mohawks have now lost three consecutive games for the first time this season. They last lost three in a row June 21-24 of last season.
    The series moves to Little Falls’ Veterans Memorial Park Saturday for Game 2. Amsterdam won all six games the teams played there this season and swept three games there in 2011. The Mohawks have won 11 consecutive games at Veterans Memorial Park a streak dating back to June 26, 2010.
    The DiamondDawgs can close out the series at home with a win in Saturday’s 7:05 contest. A win by the Mohawks would send the series back to Amsterdam for a decisive third game Sunday.
    Mohawk Valley    000 000 012 02 — 5  10  0
    Amsterdam    000 000 120 00 — 3  11  1
    Cameron Sorgie, Nathan Harrell (8), Aaron Casper (8), Sam Lisanti (8) and Jonathan Scott. Rocky McCord, Connor Kaden (8), Chase Williamson (9) and D.J. Hoagboon. W — Lisanti 1-0. L — Williamson 0-1. 2B — Mohawk Valley, David Del Grande, Jack Morrow; Amsterdam, Scott Heath. Attendance — 1,211.
    Compiled From Times Staff Reports