Loss cuts into Crush lead
The Cortland Crush are watching their lead in the New York Collegiate Baseball League Eastern Division shrinking, and you can blame the Syracuse Junior Chiefs for that.
Since the Junior Chiefs snapped the Crush’s 11-game winning steak on June 16, the visitors from Syracuse have won two of three Greg’s Field meetings including Friday night’s heated 12-8 triumph.
Cortland’s once comfortable first place lead is now down to two and one-half games. The Crush are now 15-5 while the Junior Chiefs climbed back into second place at at 14-9.
Cortland is 7-4 at home this season and a robust 8-1 on the road, with the Crush traveling to face Western Division leader Olean this afternoon at 1 p.m.
Against the Junior Chiefs, Cortland took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning on an error, passed ball and sacrifice fly by David Murphy.
Syracuse was not fazed and came back with three runs in the second inning despite a base-running blunder.
Zachary Smith walked and Webb Little singled to get things started off Cortland starter Clayton Jeffries. Joe DeLuca hit a hit flyball that Derek Martin just missed as the ball caromed off the right field wall. DeLuca got a single on the play, but because both runners held up to make sure the ball wasn’t caught DeLuca was eventually out on the play. Martin fired the ball to Jeffries, who ran DeLuca back to first base after he nearly reached second base before realizing teammate Little was standing there.
Jeffries then flipped to ball to first baseman George Haaland for the tag on DeLuca.
Unfortunately, the next three batters walked with Anthony Seminaris and Alexander Ferlenda forcing in runs to put the Junior Chiefs up 2-1. John Militano singled home the third run before Jeffries struck out Nicholas Roy and Sam Little to end the inning.
The Crush immediately took the lead back off Syracuse starter Brian Markowski with three runs in the bottom of the second.