LITTLE FALLS 2, WEST CANADA VALLEY 1, 11 innings
The season’s first meeting between the Little Falls Mounties and the West Canada Valley Indians went extra innings. Monday’s rematch did, too.
Theo Wind scored on a single by Lucas Godlewski in the bottom of the 11th inning too give Little Falls a 2-1 victory that settled the score from a 3-2 loss earlier in the spring in Newport. With lighting unavailable until May 1 at Veterans Memorial Park, the game was likely to be suspended if the Mounties did not score at that point.
“Both (pitching) staffs were on and we had to find a way to scratch out runs,” Little Falls coach Bryan Shepardson said. “Fortunately we were able to do that at the end of the game.”
Wind walked on a 3-2 pitch from Thomas Roberts leading off the 11th inning. He stole second base and moved to third on a Mitchell Baumeister bunt. Following a pair of conferences at the mound — coach Greg Jones paid a visit after the umpires dispersed the initial gathering of West Canada Valley’s infielders — Godlewski ripped the first pitch he saw from Roberts past drawn-in third baseman Cody Crossett for the game-winning hit.
Godlewski had started the game on the mound but earned no decision after he and West Canada Valley left-hander Tyler Porter each went seven innings and turned a 1-all tie over to his bullpen. Godlewski struck out 14 batters, walked six and allowed two hits; he held the Indians hitless until Frank Dufford singled off the second base bag with one out in the sixth inning. Porter was just as effective, striking out eight batters, walking three and allowing three hits. All eight hits in the games were singles and both runs charged to the starters were unearned.
Little Falls (6-3, 3-3 CSC-II) put the game’s first run on the board in the bottom of the sixth inning when Porter walked Nick Luppino leading off then surrendered a single to Josh Martin. Luppino advanced twice on wild pitches and the second gave the Mounties a 1-0 lead.
West Canada Valley (5-3, 2-2 CSC-II) had tied Little Falls with two outs in the seventh inning the first time the teams met and did so again Monday. Crossett singled and Godlewski hit Ryan Moody with a pitch. The runners moved up on a bunt and Crossett scored on a wild pitch.
Little Falls had chances to win the game in each inning before Wind finally scored. The Mounties left a runner at third base to end the seventh inning, a runner at second in the eighth, first and second in the ninth and second and third in the 10th. Roberts had ended the 10th inning with back-to-back called third strikes.
Page 2 of 2 - Roberts struck out seven batters in 3 1/3 innings and Martin, the winner in relief for Little Falls, had six strikeouts in four innings. The four pitchers combined for 35 strikeouts in the game, including 20 for Mounties Godlewski and Martin.
“The pitchers threw the ball very well,” Shepardson said. “They made it hard to get many hits.”
Dufford was the only player on either squad with multiple hits. He singled twice.
“There is a lot of good pitching in our league,” Shepardson said. “There are going to be a lot of close, low-scoring games.”
West Canada Valley had been scheduled to make up a game with Frankfort-Schuyler but was rained out Tuesday. The Indians travel to Boonville Wednesday to take on Adirondack. Little Falls plays under the lights at home Wednesday against Canastota.
LITTLE FALLS MOUNTIES 2, WEST CANADA VALLEY INDIANS 1, 11 innings
West Canada Valley 000 000 100 00 — 1 3 3
Little Falls 000 001 000 01 — 2 5 2
Tyler Porter, Thomas Roberts (8) and Mike Sternberg. Lucas Godlewski, Josh Martin (8) and Jason Vespi. W — Martin. L — T.Roberts. Records — West Canada Valley 5-3, 2-2 CSC-II; Little Falls 6-3, 3-3 CSC-II.