PURCHASE, N.Y. – For the second consecutive game at Manhattanville Field the Manhattanville baseball team earned a walk-off victory against the College of Staten Island on Tuesday afternoon by the score of 5-4. Sophomore Elias Tsouristakis (New Rochelle, N.Y./Fordham Prep) singled a 2-2 pitch into left field with the bases loaded to chase home the winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning.
Manhattanville started off the game sending sophomore David Jones (Lanesboro, Mass./Mt. Greylock) to the mound to take on the Dolphins lineup and allowed the leadoff hitter to reach via walk, the next batter bunted him over to second and Jones got the third batter of the inning to strike out. Sal Todaro singled up the middle to give the Dolphins the early 1-0 lead.
Jones and counterpart Casey Mulligan exchanged zeroes over the next several innings until the top of the fifth when Staten Island's bats got back to work. Dan Lynch led off the inning with a double and was moved over to third on a groundout; Jones got the next batter to strike out but couldn't strand Lynch at third as Will Defede notched a hit to put the Dolphins up 2-0 heading to the sixth.
In the top of the sixth, Staten Island threatened again as the first two batters reached via base hits. Two batters later Bryan Moreno hit a single to left field to a charging Ryan Blinderman (Richmond Hill, Ontario/Fairfield Warde (Conn.)) who threw home and nailed the base runner at the plate as Tsouristakis applied the tag.
Staten Island scored once more in the top of the seventh to make it 3-0, bringing up the Valiants in the bottom of the frame. Senior Dan Fiorito (Yonkers, N.Y./Fordham Prep) got the rally started by getting hit by a pitch, and two batters later Chris Nardozzi (Poughkeepsie, N.Y./Roy C. Ketcham) singled through the right side to push Fiorito to second. Two batters later junior centerfielder John Bucci (Port Chester, N.Y./Port Chester) collected a clutch double to deep centerfield to score the two runners and trim the lead to 3-2.
In the top of the eighth, Staten Island got their two run lead back off of junior relief pitcher Don Fisher (Wappingers Falls, N.Y./Roy C. Ketcham) who kept the Valiants out of further trouble sending the game to the bottom of the eighth. In the bottom portion of the frame sophomore Hans Arias (Bronx, N.Y./St. Raymond's) got the next rally started with a long double to deep left centerfield and was driven in by Tsouristakis who singled. Fiorito got another two out rally going with a base hit and was brought around by freshman Kevin Brady (Bronx, N.Y./Fordham Prep) to tie the game at four.
Freshman Joe Palmeri (Mastic, N.Y./Eastport/South Manor) came on to pitch the top of the ninth and worked around a two out single to send the game to the bottom of the ninth. Bucci got a one out base hit to get the bottom of the ninth started followed by fellow junior Johnny LoVetere (Southbury, Conn./Canterbury) getting an infield single with both runners moving up to second and third on a throw that went out of play down the first base line. Staten Island intentionally walked Arias to bring up Tsouristakis who sent the 2-2 pitch into left field to score Bucci and give the Valiants their second consecutive walk-off win.
Earning his first career win in relief was Palmeri (1-1) who pitched a scoreless ninth inning to close out the game after Jones pitched seven strong innings allowing three runs on 13 hits. Fisher allowed the Dolphins' fourth run in the top of the eighth. Taking the loss was Jonathan Aponte (2-2) who allowed three runs in the final 1 2/3 innings on seven base hits. Mulligan allowed eight hits and a pair of runs while taking the no decision.
Manhattanville (10-12, 5-7 Freedom) get right back to action tomorrow afternoon when they host Baruch at 4:00 p.m. with live stats available on GoValiants.com. Staten Island (12-12, 5-1 CUNYAC) also play tomorrow afternoon when they host William Paterson, with first pitch also slated for 4:00 p.m.