Ninth Inning Rally Falls Short In New Paltz Baseball's 2-1 Loss to Fredonia

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Andrew Grann
Box Score 

NEW PALTZ, N.Y. – Down 2-0 heading into the bottom of the ninth, the State University of New York at New Paltz baseball team used back-to-back doubles to create a dramatic finish, one that saw visiting SUNY Fredonia close out the contest with timely relief pitching to register a 2-1 State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) victory under rainy conditions at Loren Campbell Field on Friday afternoon.
For eight innings, Fredonia senior pitcher Sean Larson threw a gem, limiting the Hawks to just three hits. But in the bottom of the ninth, consecutive doubles by junior Mike Sparacino (Commack, N.Y./Commack) and juniorStanley DeLaCruz (Bronx, N.Y./High School of International Business and Finance) knocked Larson out of the game and positioned the Hawks to mount a comeback victory. However, the Blue Devils went to the bullpen, and senior southpaw reliever Kyle Grey closed the game out, retiring all three batters he faced.
The loss drops New Paltz to 10-16, 2-8 SUNYAC. Fredonia improves to 8-9, 3-2 SUNYAC. The teams will next play a Saturday doubleheader starting at noon.
In a game delayed 30 minutes due to persistent and often heavy rain, pitching ruled the day for both teams. New Paltz senior starter Andrew Grann was masterful through six innings, allowing only six hits while striking out six. One of those hits became the game winner, however, a two-run home run in the top of the second inning by senior Bobby Franz that cleared the left field wall and drove home freshman Michael Prentice, who singled to right field to start the inning.
From that point on, Grann and relievers – junior Roy Missall (Hemlock, N.Y./Honeoye Central) and junior Jesse Vahamonde (Huntington, N.Y./Harborfields) were sensational, scattering a combined eight hits and keeping Fredonia off the scoreboard for the remainder of the game. After loading the bases in the fourth inning, Grann showed his seasoning by keeping Fredonia off the board thanks to a nifty changeup that induced a groundball out.
Prior to the bottom of the ninth, Larson had allowed three hits with five strikeouts. DeLaCruz finished the game with two of his team's five hits.