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Leiter and Mohawks punch out Pioneers

By John McGraw

Box Score

ELMIRA, N.Y. – The Amsterdam Mohawks scored four times in the first inning and Mark Leiter Jr. (NJIT) struck out a season-high 10 over six frames in a 7-2 victory over the Elmira Pioneers on Saturday night at Dunn Field. The Mohawks (22-5) ended Elmira’s five-game winning streak and captured the overall season series from the Pioneers (11-16), two games to none. Amsterdam also increased its’ lead in the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League standings to seven games over second-place Glens Falls.

The sixth-ranked Mohawks never trailed during the game in front of an announced crowd of 2,143 at Dunn Field. Amsterdam came out swinging in the first and pounded Elmira starting pitcher Dylan Waugh (Arizona Christian) for four runs on five hits. Zak Colby (Faulkner), Brian Ruby (Binghamton) and Chase Williamson (Auburn) all drove in scores for the Mohawks in an inning that was aided by a pair of Elmira defensive miscues. Amsterdam tacked on single runs in the third, fifth and seventh in a wire-to-wire victory.

Mark Leiter Jr. quieted the crowd and the Elmira bats to the tune of a four-hit shutout. He scattered out three singles and one double. The Pioneers were never able to string together more than one hit in a single inning. Leiter, who led the league in strikeouts last season, recorded his first seven outs all via strikeout. Amsterdam was only threatened once when Leiter was on the mound. Elmira’s Zac Bellinger (VCU) attempted to score from third on a fly out to center field in the fifth. He was thrown out at home plate by center fielder Demarcus Henderson (Miss. State) to end the inning.

Leiter combined with relievers Scott Heath (Maine) and Chase Williamson on a 14-strikeout performance. Heath tossed two frames and fanned two while Williamson struck out two of the four batters in the bottom of the ninth. For the season, Amsterdam has struck out a league-best 269.

Through two starts with the Mohawks, Leiter is now 2-0 with a 1.50 earned run average. He has 16 strikeouts in 12.0 innings pitched and has walked just three batters.

Zak Colby mashed his league-leading 11th double of the season and scored twice to pace six different Mohawks with at least one run. Demarcus Henderson and Josh Nethaway (UAlbany) each had two hits to pace a nine-hit attack against Elmira pitching.

Brian Ruby drove in his third run for the Mohawks in three games. Since joining the team last week, the former New York State Class A Player of the Year is batting .385 (5-for-13) with three RBI and three runs scored.

In two games against the Pioneers this year, the Mohawks outscored their counterparts from the Southern Tier 14-3. Amsterdam defeated Elmira, 7-1, on June 15 at Shuttleworth Park.

Steven Patterson (San Joaquin Delta) led Elmira with two hits. Tyler McIntyre (Central Conn. State) hit a two-run double in the eighth to break up what would have been Amsterdam’s fourth shutout victory of the season.

Pioneers’ starter Dylan Waugh was tagged with his first loss of the season. The reigning Co-PGCBL Pitcher of the Week allowed six runs on eight hits, walked none, struck out two and hit two.

Amsterdam, making its’ lone trip of the season to Elmira, opened the scoring quickly in the top of the first inning. Demarcus Henderson and Jeff Boehm (Kentucky) topped the Tribe line-up for the second night in a row and the pair opened the contest with back-to-back base hits. Chase Green (SIU Edwardsville) attempted to move the runners over however a wild throw from Dylan Waugh allowed Henderson to dash home from second and Boehm to reach third. Amsterdam’s lead grew to 2-0 when Zak Colby plated Boehm with a sacrifice fly.

With one out, Chase Green swiped second and then scored on a base hit by Brian Ruby. Ruby advanced to second on a D.J. Hoagboon (UAlbany/Mayfield) ground out and then moved over to third on a Josh Nethaway base hit. With two outs, designated hitter Chase Williamson drove in Ruby with an RBI single to give Amsterdam a 4-0 lead. Williamson recorded his third hit in as many at-bats dating back to the Cooperstown game on July 2. He currently holds a three-game hit streak.

The Mohawks went in order in the second but then increased their lead in the third with a quick two-out rally against Dylan Waugh. D.J. Hoagboon was the catalyst as he connected on a two-out single and then swiped second for one of Amsterdam’s three stolen bases on the night. Hoagboon scored from second on a Josh Nethaway (UAlbany) single.

Zak Colby added to the lead in the fifth inning. He smashed a lead-off double. After a passed ball, one of three charged to Elmira catcher Stephen Sunday (Sullivan County C.C.), Brian Ruby launched a fly ball to right field that was deep enough to score Colby from third on a sacrifice fly. Colby scored his second run of the night in the seventh as he turned a one-out walk by Elmira reliever Brad Bellinger (St. John’s) into Amsterdam’s seventh run on a passed ball.

The Mohawks return to action on Sunday, July 8, at Shuttleworth Park against the Cooperstown Hawkeyes on Amsterdam Idol Night sponsored by Alteri’s Auto Body. The game against Cooperstown is scheduled to begin at 7:05 p.m.  

 Listen to every Mohawks home game and select road games at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/mohawksradio

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