Men’s Baseball Looks to End Season Strong

Although the Hawks have struggled within the past few weeks, they were able to split the first day of their series with SUNY Oneonta Wednesday, winning 11-7 while also losing 14-8. (Photo courtesy of Sal Delio)

The New Paltz Baseball team was swept by SUNY Cortland this past weekend, but bounced back Wednesday afternoon with a doubleheader sweep against SUNY Oneonta to move to 11-15 overall and 3-11 in the State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC).

On Friday, the Hawks had the bases loaded in the top of the first, following a single by third-year outfielder Julian Francisco and two walks. New Paltz just could not bring home a run, and allowed Cortland to take the advantage, 3-0 in the bottom half of the inning.

The Hawks would not go down without a fight, going down 1-2-3 in the third inning, but fourth-year pitcher Justin Stybel pitched a scoreless frame to keep his team afloat. Fourth year first-baseman Justin Ganca was hit by a pitch in the top of the fifth, and scored the Hawk’s first run of the night off a sacrifice fly. 

Cortland, however, came back with a vengeance in the bottom of the fifth, extending their lead to 9-1 after a three-RBI double and RBI single. New Paltz first-year infielder Michael Boccarossa hit a single to center field in the seventh to allow another run to score, but SUNY Cortland took the win 9-2 heading into the double-header on Saturday.  

Saturday fared no better for the Hawks, dropping both games in a series sweep by Cortland. Game two started off with a walk for the Hawk’s Francisco, but they could not get a run in during that first inning. The bottom of the first gave Cortland the advantage they needed on a single and two throwing errors, taking a 3-0 lead. 

New Paltz once again had a runner on base in the second inning, but struck out before they could cross the plate. Cortland slammed two RBI doubles, another RBI single, and a hit-by-pitch with the bases loaded to go up 8-0 against the Hawks. 

The Hawks came back in the third inning, with a single from Francisco bringing home a runner. Fourth-year Danny Campbell and third-year outfielder Matt Warshaw added RBI singles to the team score, leaving New Paltz down 8-4. 

“We battled and fought early on in those games against Cortland, they just didn’t go the way we wanted them to,” Warshaw said.  

Cortland got their team another three runs during the fourth inning, and a homer by second-year first-baseman Dean Stalzer in the fifth put a cap on New Paltz’s score for the afternoon, losing to Cortland 14-5.

In the final game against Cortland fourth-year outfielder Danny Campbell drove an RBI single to left center to give the Hawks a 1-0 advantage in the first inning.

Both teams went 1-2-3 in the bottom of the first and top of the second, but Cortland came back swinging in the bottom of the inning, driving home two singles and a sacrifice fly to nag the lead 3-1. 

The Hawks were not backing down, scoring again in the top of the fourth off a single by Boccarossa to put the score at 3-2. Unfortunately, that would be the last run of the night from New Paltz, and Cortland managed to put away nine more runs to take a 12-2 lead straight to victory. 

“We need to start really trusting each other in the field and executing the plays we practice everyday,” Stalzer said. “If we can do that we can turn this season around quickly.” 

The Hawks did just that in their double-header on Wednesday April 17 in a series split against SUNY Oneonta’s Red Dragons. This game was crucial in the Hawk’s battle toward playoffs, and winning against their Catskill Cup Rival would increase their postseason chances. 

New Paltz was hard pressed during the first game of the series, but came out on top 11-7 over the Dragons. Oneonta took the advantage at 1-0, but in the bottom of the first, Stalzer knocked a single to left field that started the scoring for the Hawks. Following a passed ball run, second-year infielder John McCarrick drove a single to right that brought home the final two runners, giving New Paltz the advantage 5-1. 

Oneonta scored on a grounder in the top of the second, and the Hawks answered with a steal of home after a single by Stalzer. By the fourth inning, the Hawks had the lead 7-4, but a last minute comeback from the Dragons had the two teams tied at seven in the seventh inning. Stalzer scored on a sacrifice fly to take back the lead, and two more runs on a single and double, respectively, rounded out game one, giving the Hawks the win 11-7. 

Unfortunately, the Hawks lost their second game of the day against Oneonta 14-8, even after a last minute surge in the bottom of the sixth. 

Oneonta started the score 3-0 in the top of the first, and the Hawks only answered for one of those with a run by Francisco on a base knock. The teams went scoreless in the third inning, but the fourth left New Paltz in the dust as Oneonta managed seven runs, bringing their lead up to 10-1. The Dragons took three more runs in the fifth, but New Paltz came back on a single to the shortstop by Warshaw to bring the score 13-2. 

The Hawks would not go down without a fight, however, and scored five runs in the bottom of the sixth inning. They would lose by the final score of 14-8.

The Hawks will finish out the Oneonta series tomorrow at noon on the Loren Campbell Memorial Field. 

About Shyana Fisher 60 Articles
Shyana Fisher is a fourth-year journalism major. This is her sixth semester on staff at the Oracle, previously serving as a sports copy editor and Features Page Editor. She enjoys writing profiles and has recently found passion in her radio station internship at WGNA 107.7.