In a battle of bitter rivals, the baseball team faced off against SUNY Cortland, the No. 2–ranked team in the Division III rankings, in a matchup that went into extra innings. The Bombers eventually fell 3–2 after late-inning heroics from the Red Dragons. With the loss, the Blue and Gold are now 6–7 on the season.
The Bombers got to an early 1–0 lead after junior second baseman Josh Savacool singled to right field, stole second base and later scored on a fielding error. The team maintained a 1–0 lead into the fifth inning until Cortland scored on a double from junior left outfielder Nick Hart that tied the game up at 1–1.
In the bottom of the eighth, Cortland sophomore Ralph Nuzzi stole second base and later advanced to third on a groundout, and the Red Dragons looked poised to score. But sophomore relief pitcher Tyler Hill managed to get the team out of the jam by securing a groundout to end the inning.
To start the ninth inning, junior pinch hitter Ryan Dougherty reached first base on an error. Freshman right fielder Sam Little approached the batter’s box with hopes of scoring Dougherty, but then reached first base on a throwing error from the pitcher, Cortland freshman Kashaun Curry, while Dougherty advanced to third base.
Sophomore catcher Jason Uliano was called on to pinch hit for sophomore outfielder Domenic Boresta, but struck out swinging. A steal from Little gave the team some hope of scoring, but the team followed it up with two consecutive strikeouts to end the inning, forcing the game into extra innings.
In the bottom of the 10th, Nuzzi came up to bat again with two outs and blasted a walk-off home run to secure the victory for the Red Dragons. Poor fielding almost cost Cortland the game, as they committed a total of four errors throughout the game.
Hill took the loss in relief after going 3.2 innings while giving up three walks and the walk-off home run. Senior starting pitcher Benji Parkes went six innings and allowed nine hits, but only two runs.
The Bombers finished the day with a total of five hits, including two from Savacool, who also drove in a run. Junior shortstop Trevor Thompson recorded one hit and a walk, while also driving in one run.
The Blue and Gold return to action at 4 p.m. March 29 in Freeman Field against No. 19 SUNY Oswego.