PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. – The Plattsburgh State baseball broke a 2-2 tie in the seventh inning en route to a 6-4 win against the Fredonia Blue Devils in State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) play at Chip Cummings Field on Friday. The Cardinals move to 11-20 overall and 3-13 in the league, while the Blue Devils are 16-18 and 3-13.
Plattsburgh State freshmen Stephen Bryant (Center Moriches, N.Y./Center Moriches), Alex Follmer (Plattsburgh, N.Y./Plattsburgh) and Kentaro Mori (Tokyo, Japan/Joto) all went 2-for-4, with Bryant and Mori also doubling and Follmer chipping in an RBI. Junior Noah Clark (Toms River, N.J./Toms River East/Caldwell) clubbed an RBI double, while sophomore Jon Craft (Smithtown, N.Y./Smithtown West) provided an RBI single. Junior Joe Deland (Farmingville, N.Y./Sachem East/Suffolk County CC) singled, stole a base and scored a run. Sophomore Frank Finkbeiner (Stone Ridge, N.Y./Rondout Valley) earned the win in relief by throwing 2.1 scoreless innings and freshman Justin Adams (Valhalla, N.Y./Westlake) collected his second save of the season. Adams, Finkbeiner and freshman Brantley Marion (Plattsburgh, N.Y./Beekmantown Central) combined for four hitless and scoreless innings. Sophomore starter Patrick Bryant (Center Moriches, N.Y./Center Moriches/Hofstra) tossed 5+ innings for the no decision.
Fredonia sophomore Kevin Yirinec ripped a two-run triple and walked twice and senior Liam Kelly singled, drove in a run and scored a run. Senior Alexio Medina singled, walked and stole two bases, while classmate James Krolikowski doubled, walked, was hit by a pitch and stole a base. Sophomore Luke Kuczewski took the loss after surrendering six runs – four earned – on 10 hits in 7+ innings.
The visitors left a runner at second base in both of the first two innings. The Cardinals then used some two-out hitting in the third as Mori laced a hanging curveball into the left-center gap for a standup double. Follmer followed one pitch later with an RBI single into right field to give the hosts a 1-0 lead. A pair of Blue Devils reached scoring position in the fourth, but Patrick Bryant got a strikeout and a groundout to keep the runners at bay.
Fredonia would take a 2-1 lead in the top of the fifth as Yirinec deposited a two-out, two-run triple into right center. The Cardinals equalized the next half inning as Stephen Bryant and Deland pulled off a double steal on a first-and-third play. Fredonia would plate a pair of runs in the sixth to regain the lead at 4-2. Plattsburgh State fought back and scored three times in the seventh for a 5-4 edge. The hosts strung together four straight singles, the latter coming off of Craft's bat to score senior Ray Flynn (Bethpage, N.Y./Plainedge). A failed pickoff attempt at third base then allowed two Cardinals to come home.
Fredonia would threaten in the top of the ninth as Medina and Yirinec drew back-to-back one-out walks. Both runners then swiped bases to give the Blue Devils runners at second and third. A strikeout was followed by a hit by a pitch to load the bases with two outs, but Adams struck out the final batter on four pitches to conserve the win.
Plattsburgh State and Fredonia close out the series on Saturday with a noon doubleheader. Prior to the first game, four Cardinal seniors will be recognized as part of Senior Day.