When Schenectady starter Chris Landis bounced two of his first three warmup pitches in the dirt, it was a sign of things to come for the Patriots and Albany, the non-league opponent they’d battled for three-plus hours the day before.
“When you get to guys you don’t expect to be out there a lot, that’s when you get the walks and the wild pitches,” said Albany coach Garett Baron. “It’s tough for everyone when you’re trying to jam in games.”
In a baseball game full of give and take Wednesday at Central Park’s Joe Spruill Field, the Patriots outlasted the Falcons, 11-6, and completed a two-game sweep of their former Big 10 rival.
The three-hour contest included 18 walks by the two mound staffs, and both teams scored four runs on wild pitches. Schenectady scored twice on those in a seven-run third inning to overcome a 2-1 deficit.
“We took advantage of the breaks more than them,” said Schenectady coach John Isabella.
Schenectady (2-1) beat Albany (0-4) in 10 innings Tuesday, 13-12, using four pitchers before Landis and Jordan Bernacet worked Wednesday’s rematch. Albany used four pitchers in both games.
“Both teams are still getting the kinks out,” said Isabella. “It was such a tough winter and late spring.”
Bernacet got the win in both games, working the last 32⁄3 innings Wednesday, allowing allowing four hits with three strikeouts and no walks. The senior lefty came on with the bases full in the fourth, and in between two strikeouts, he unleashed a pair of run-scoring wild pitches as Albany cut its deficit to 8-5.
Schenectady got a run back on a wild pitch in the fourth, and scored twice in the fifth on another wild pitch and a bases-loaded walk.
“It’s early in the season,” said Bernacet. “Guys are trying to get their feel. As we go along, we’ll get better. They’ll get better.”
Bernacet gave up one run over the final three frames, with Quinn MacDonald hitting his second RBI single for the Falcons in the sixth. Bernacet set down the next five batters he faced to finish off the victory.
“When Jordan is on the mound, the guys are in tune with him. He brings the confidence up,” said Isabella, who saw Bernacet post a 6-1 pitching mark last season. “That’s what’s supposed to happen with your No. 1 pitcher.”
“When I came in with the bases loaded, my thought was if they hit the ball in the gap, it’s going to hurt us,” said Bernacet. “My thought was to get the game back in control. I got through that first inning, and put the ball where I wanted over the last few innings.”
Bernacet drove in runs with a single and a bases-loaded walk in Schenectady’s seven-run third, Tyler Gannon hit a two-run single, and Asa Egnaczyk delivered a run with a sacrifice fly. The frame included seven walks by Klyne Ludewick and Reed Drucker, and Ludewick uncorked a pair of run-scoring wild pitches.
“Big innings have hurt us,” said Baron. “We had a 12-5 lead [Tuesday], and they tied it up.”
“We’ve got to play a lot better, and so does Garret’s team,” said Isabella. “We’ve both got a lot of work to do.”
Francisco Stec hit an RBI single in the Schenectady first, and Albany went up in the third, 2-1, when MacDonald hit an RBI single and scored on a wild pitch by Landis. Landis, who gave up two hits but walked seven, threw another run-scoring wild pitch in the fourth.
Albany 002 301 0 — 6 6 1
Schenectady 107 120 x — 11 7 1
MacDonald, Ludewick (2), Drucker (3), Badalucco (5) and Badalucco, Owens (5); Landis, Bernacet (4) and Egnaczyk.
Categories: High School Sports