AUBURN, N.Y. – Harry Roberson '18 hit the game-winning RBI single in the top of the 11th inning Wednesday to give the fifth-seeded Amherst College baseball team a 7-5 win over fourth-seeded SUNY Oswego in the first game of the 2015 NCAA New York Regional Wednesday at Falcon Park.
For the Purple & White, it was the team's second-consecutive extra-inning game as they improve to 27-13 overall and advance to the winner's bracket of the double-elimination format. They will play the winner of No. 1 SUNY Cortland vs. No. 8 Oberlin tomorrow, May 14 at 4:30 p.m. The Lakers fall to the loser's bracket and drop to 27-12. They will play the loser of SUNY Cortland/Oberlin tomorrow at 10 a.m.
Amherst totaled 17 hits in the game and were led by Roberson's four (4-for-6). He also drove in two runs and scored once, while five others recorded multi-hit games. Four pitchers took the mound, as 2015 NESCAC Player of the Year Mike Odenwaelder '16 received the win in just his second appearance this season. He did not allow a hit or run in 2.0 innings and also struck out a batter.
SUNY Oswego recorded 14 hits as a team and threw two pitchers. Dan Saccocio, Eric Hamilton and John Rauseo each went 3-for-5, while Jordan Giller finished 2-for-4 with a RBI and two runs scored. Brendyn Karinchak started on the mound and tossed 11.0 innings, allowing four runs on 11 hits. Pat Brown pitched 3.0 innings of relief and allowed three runs on six hits, and was credited with the loss.
The Jeffs wasted no time getting on the board Wednesday morning. In the top of the first inning, Roberson singled to left center with one out to start the rally. Odenwaelder then singled to right field to put runners on first and second, before Yanni Thanopoulos '17 drove home Roberson with a single up the middle.
After a scoreless second, SUNY Oswego evened the score at 1-1 in the bottom of the third. After a single and a walk, Eric Hamilton drove in Saccocio with a single up the middle. The following inning, the Lakers took the lead for the first time in the game. After consecutive singles to start the bottom of the fourth, a sacrifice bunt advanced runners to second and third, before an infield groundout by Kyle Simmons brought home Giller as SUNY Oswego went ahead, 2-1.
Both teams exchanged runs in the fifth, as Tyler Jacobs '15 hit a RBI single in the top of the inning to tie the game before Brian Hamilton returned the favor with a RBI single of his own in the bottom half.
Trailing 3-2 in the top of the sixth, Andrew Vandini '16 hit a one-out single to center field to put the tying run on base. He advanced to second on the next at-bat on a single by Conner Gunn '16, and later reached third on a single by Sam Ellinwood '18 to load the bases. After Vandini was thrown out at home on a fielder's choice, Eric West '15 stepped to the plate with two outs and singled to center field to drive in Gunn and Ellinwood as the Jeffs regained the lead, 4-3.
After two scoreless innings, Amherst increased its lead to two in the top of the ninth. With two outs and Jacobs on third, after reaching base with a single to left field, Roberson singled through the left side to give the Jeffs the 5-3 advantage.
However, the Lakers rallied in the bottom half of the inning to force extra-innings. After a lead-off single by Eric Hamilton and a walk to Myles Kutscher put runners on base with zero outs, Mike Castiglie '17 caught Hamilton trying to steal third as Kutscher advanced to second. Giller then stepped to the plate and doubled deep to left center to cut the deficit to one. Rauseo singled to center on the next at-bat to advance Giller to third, leading to a sacrifice fly by Wes Randall as SUNY Oswego rallied to tie the game at 5-5.
The Lakers threatened again in the bottom of the 10th but came away scoreless to give the Jeffs another chance in the 11th inning, as they seized their opportunity. With one out and the bases empty, West singled up the middle to place the go-ahead run onboard. Brendon Hardin '15 then singled to right field, advancing West to third, and then stole second. Roberson stepped to the plate and hit the game-winning RBI single to center field to bring home West. Amherst scored an insurance run on the next at-bat as Odenwaelder hit a sacrifice fly to give the Purple & White another two-run lead.
After consecutive walks to Lakers' batters and a sacrifice bunt advanced runners to second and third in the bottom of the 11th, Odenwaelder struck out back-to-back batters to end the threat as the Jeffs advanced to the winner's bracket with a 7-5 win.