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Elmira comes from 3 down to beat Amsterdam 5-4

By Brandon Hillier

Box Score

Ryan Clark delivers a pitch

AMSTERDAM- The Amsterdam Mohawks (2-6) drop their second consecutive game by throwing away a lead, losing 5-4 to the Elmira Pioneers (4-3). A 3-run top of the ninth inning was the nail in the coffin the Pios needed to beat the Mohawks for the second time this year.

Jack Cseszewski (Illinois St.) hit a three run bomb over the right field wall and over just about everything else in Shuttleworth Park to give the Mohawks the lead in the third inning, but that was all the offense Amsterdam could muster until the bottom of the ninth inning. Zach Bellinger (St. Rose) went 2-3 with two runs scored in the game for the Pioneers.

In his first start of the young season for the Mohawks, Ryan Clark (NC Greensboro) pitched four perfect innings with five strikeouts. Clark ran into trouble in the fifth, allowing back-to-back hits to start the inning, but made it out of trouble.

Logan Salow (Kentucky) pitched four innings allowing three runs (two earned), five walks, and had two strikeouts. Salow gave up the three-run homer to Cseszewski, but that was it.

Elmira attempted a comeback in the seventh inning against relief pitcher John McCarren (Wake Forest). Christian Santisteban (Manhattan) and Bellinger lead off the inning with back-to-back singles. Taylor Hillson (Mansfield) reached on a sacrifice bunt single when the throw was bobbled by Mohawks first baseman Brendan Tracy (Fairfield). Joey Guaragna (Old Dominion) grounded out to second, allowing Santisteban to score inching the Pioneers to a 3-1 deficit. Thomas Hackimer (St. John’s) came in for McCarren and gave up an RBI groundout to Jordan Taylor (Radford), bringing the lead down to one run for the Mohawks.

Joe Randall (Fairfield) came on in the ninth inning to close out the game for the Mohawks, but did just the opposite. Randall walked Santisteban and Bellinger to start off the inning. Then the two runners stole third and second respectively on a failed bunt attempt by Taylor Hillson. Santisteban scored on a wild pitch tying the game at three apiece. Then, Hillson singled up the middle bringing in Bellinger to give the Pios the first lead of the game, 4-3. Guaragna bunted to move Hillson to second, and then the Mansfield freshman stole third base and scored on an errant throw by Mohawks’ catcher Blake Logan (Auburn).

The Mohawks went into the bottom of the ninth deflated but made a valiant effort at a comeback.  Tucker Rekucki (Bucknell) came on to close the deal for the Pios and made things interesting. Marcus Carson (Kentucky) led off the inning with a walk. After replacing Connor Heady (Kentucky) after an injury, Luke Nethaway (St. Rose) was hit in the shoulder. Josh Gardiner (Radford) sacrifice bunted, moving Carson and Nethaway into scoring position. JaVon Shelby (Kentucky) grounded out to shortstop, allowing Carson to score from third. Cseszewski was intentionally walked, but Jonathon Pryor (Wake Forest) struck out swinging to end the game.

The Mohawks lose their fifth one-run game of the season and have dropped two consecutive, moving to 2-6 on the young season. Amsterdam makes the trek to Watertown to take on the Rams on a Sunday afternoon matinee at 5 p.m.

Elmira moves above the .500 make with the win at 4-3. The Pioneers will host the Newark Pilots in a western division battle for first place at 7 p.m. at Dunn Field in Elmira.

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