League Champs

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DiamondDawgs Clinch First Trip to PGCBL Championship Series

By Cody Marshall

Box Score

Troy Scocca (Fairfield) blasted a two-run home run to right field in the third inning and that was all Mohawk Valley needed as they defeated the Amsterdam Mohawks 5-1 and won the East Division Championship Series, 2-1.

Ryan O’Connor (Fairfield) and Anthony Herrera (UL-Monroe) combined to keep the Mohawks hitters off balance all game long. Chris Rave (Herkimer CC) finished the night 3-for-4 with three singles. Scocca went 2-for-3 with a home run, a double, and three RBIs.

Mohawk Valley got on the board in the third inning when Herrera reached to start the inning and scored on Scocca’s homer three batters later. In the fourth, Rave singled off Mohawks starter Fernando Guerrero (Marshall), was sacrificed to second and came in on Herrera’s RBI double to put Mohawk Valley in front 3-0.

DiamondDawgs starter Ryan O’Connor went four scoreless innings and allowed just four hits and walked three. From there, Herrera went the final five innings, allowed four hits, an earned run, no walks, and struck out seven.

The lead mounted further in the seventh inning when Scocca doubled to deep right center field to drive in Matt Pagano (Fairfield). Scocca would score on the ensuing batter when Ryan Stekl (Canisius) singled to right and the right fielder’s throw home sailed over the catcher.

Amsterdam scored their only tally in the ninth inning after Craig Dedelow (Indiana) doubled to left center and was driven in on Gage West’s (Florida State) single two batters later.

The win went to O’Connor, his first of the postseason (went 2-1 in the regular season). The loss went to Guerrero (5-2 in the regular season).

With the win, the Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs punched their tickets to the PGCBL Championship Series against the West Division’s Victor RailRiders. The series will begin Wednesday in Victor. Games two and three will be played at Veterans Memorial Field in Little Falls.

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