Courtesy of Cortland Sports Information
AUBURN, N.Y. – Joe Tardif (Cutchogue/Mattituck) scored on a two-out passed ball in the bottom of the 10th inning as top-seeded and nationally ninth-ranked Cortland escaped with a 5-4 win over eighth seed Westfield State in the opening round of the NCAA Division III Baseball New York Regional at Falcon Park.
Cortland advances to play fifth-seeded Swarthmore in the winner's bracket of the eight-team, double-elimination tournament Friday at 4:30 p.m. Westfield (24-17-1) will face fourth-seeded Baldwin-Wallace in an elimination game Friday at 10 a.m.
Cortland's winning rally started when Marcos Perivolaris (Mattituck) led off with a single to short and moved to second on a Matthew Personius (Binghamton/Chenango Valley) sac bunt. After Tardif was intentionally walked, Matt Michalski (Buffalo/Sweet Home) drew a walk to load the bases. The Owls got a force out at home on a ball hit to third by pinch hitter Frank Vesuvio (Armonk/Byram Hills), but Vesuvio hustled down the line to beat the attempted double play throw to first. Tardif then scored on the passed ball to end the game.
Isiah Hudson (Hyde Park/FDR) earned the win in relief with five innings of four-hit relief. He allowed one unearned run, struck out seven and walked none. Mike Harrington (Glens Falls) started and gave up seven hits and three runs in five innings with four strikeouts and a walk.
Westfield starter John Gegetskas gave up five hits and four runs in seven innings. He walked five, struck out four and hit a batter. Vincenzo Camera, the Owls' second reliever, took the loss after giving up an unearned run over an inning and a third.
Cortland won despite being outhit, 11-7. Patrick Schetter (Beacon) was 2-for-4 with an RBI and Perivolaris was 2-for-5 for the Red Dragons, while Michalski drew four walks and Tardif walked twice and scored twice.
Anthony Crowley was 3-for-5, Jake Gibb finished 2-for-3 with a walk, and Brett Dooley was 2-for-5 with an RBI for Westfield.
Westfield grabbed a 1-0 lead in the top of the second. Crowley led off with a double, advanced to third on a Gibb single and scored on a Colin Dunn fielder's choice. Cortland plated two runs in the bottom of the second without the benefit of a hit. Personius was hit by a pitch and Tardif and Michalski each walked to load the bases. Paul Dondero (East Islip) hit a sac fly to right to drive in Personius, and Colin BeVard (Syracuse/West Genesee) brought home a run with a groundout to first.
The Red Dragon lead grew to 4-1 in the fourth, with one of their two runs in the inning again coming without a hit. Michalski walked and Dondero bunted him to second. Michalski was safe at third on a throw from short after a BeVard grounder, and he scored on Antonio Pragana's (Hopewell Junction/John Jay) sac fly to center. BeVard then stole second and scored on Schetter's single to left.
The Owls answered with two runs in the top of the fifth on RBI singles by John Lippincott and Alex Lafayette. In the seventh, Tyler Beach led off by reaching on an error when the ball was thrown away after a chopper in front of the plate. Two batters later Dooley hit an RBI single to left to tie the game at 4-4.