Baseball Splits Home-Opening Doubleheader with Binghamton
Game One Score: UAlbany 4, Binghamton 3 (11)
Game Two Score: Binghamton 11, UAlbany 1
Location: Varsity Field in Albany, N.Y.
Records: UAlbany (9-12, 2-3 AE); Binghamton (9-11, 2-2 AE)
Short Story: UAlbany opens the 2019 home baseball season splitting a doubleheader with Binghamton, walking off in extra innings in the first game before falling in the second.
Coach Mueller: “We had a hard-earned split today. We battled back and were able to win the opener, but defensive break downs at critical moments, coupled with a difficult task in trying to solve pitcher Ben Anderson made for a long second game. But we’re looking forward to tomorrow’s rubber-match.”
- Alex Thul hit 2-2 and scored two runs
- Patrick Lagravinese hit 1-5 with two RBIs and one run scored
- John Clayton lasted 6.2 innings, allowing two runs on eight hits with five strikeouts
- UAlbany recorded its first hit in the eighth inning
- Binghamton pitcher Nick Gallagher lasted 7.0 innings, allowing one run on one hit with four strikeouts
- Patrick Lagravinese hit 2-3 with a run scored
- Travis Collins hit 1-3 with one RBI
- Dominic Savino lasted 5.0 innings, allowing five runs (one earned) on six hits with two strikeouts
- Binghamton pitcher Ben Anderson pitched a complete game (7.0 innings), allowing one run on five hits with seven strikeouts
- Binghamton combined to outhit UAlbany 24-10 over two games
The University at Albany baseball team finally hosted its 2019 home opener after 19-straight games on the road to open the season. Saturday, the Great Danes welcomed conference rival Binghamton to Varsity Field for a double-header.
Game one saw Binghamton come out aggressively at the plate, swinging early and often in the count. Despite the aggressive stance, the Bearcats managed just one run in the first six innings, scoring in the top of the second on a sacrifice fly with the bases loaded and two outs.
UAlbany’s first baserunner in the first game was Josh Loeffler, who was hit by a pitch from Binghamton starter Nick Gallagher in the bottom of the third. Loeffler stole second to get in scoring position two batters later and advanced to third on a passed ball, but the threat passed without Loeffler crossing the plate.
In the bottom of the fifth, Patrick Lagravinese led off reaching safely on an error by the Binghamton first baseman. Loeffler was hit by his second pitch of the day, taking first and pushing Lagravinese to second. The next batter, Matt Codispoti, grounded into a fielder’s choice, advancing Lagravinese to third. With runners on the corners and two out, Kevin Donati reached first base safely after the Binghamton third baseman dropped his pop-up. Lagravinese crossed the plate to tie the game at one, but Codispoti was caught in a rundown and thrown out at the plate to end the inning.
A scoreless sixth fed into Binghamton breaking the 1-1 tie in the top of the seventh with an RBI single to center with two outs. Binghamton added one more run in the top of the eighth to take a 3-1 lead.
UAlbany held the Bearcats scoreless in the top of the ninth, and rallied to score two runs to tie the game at three and force extra innings. Second baseman Nick Kondo led off the inning with a single to first. Pinch hitting for starting shortstop Travis Collins, Alex Thul singled to left, pushing Kondo to second. Marc Wangenstein successfully laid down a sacrifice bunt, advancing both runners. With runners on second and third and one out, Lagravinese hit a single to right field, clearing the bases and tying the game.
Binghamton never advanced past first base in extra innings, coming close in the top of the 10th on a steal attempt that was thwarted by the Great Dane defense. In the bottom of the 11th, still tied at three, Thul hit a one-out single through the left side, and advanced to second when Wangenstein, the next batter, was hit by a pitch. In the ensuing at-bat, Lagravinese hit a grounder to the shortstop, sparking a double-play attempt for the Binghamton defense. The shortstop threw out Wangenstein at second but Lagravinese was safe at first when the first baseman dropped the incoming throw. In the next at-bat, Lagravinese stole second before the Bearcats walked Malm to load the bases with one out. Peter Torres came in to pinch hit for Kenny Hayden, and during Torres’ at-bat, the Bearcat pitcher missed the catcher badly, allowing Thul to score cleanly from third on a wild pitch to end the game.
John Clayton lasted 6.2 innings on the mound, allowing two runs on eight hits with five strikeouts and no walks. On the other side, Gallagher went 7.0 innings with one run on one hit and four strikeouts. The Bearcats did not allow a UAlbany hit until the eighth inning, and out-hit the Danes 11-5. Lagravinese finished batting 1-5 with one run scored and two RBIs, and Thul hit 2-2 with two runs scored off the bench. Binghamton stranded eight baserunners, while UAlbany stranded four.
Binghamton quickly got on the board in Game Two, scoring once in the top of the first inning. Back-to-back singles to lead off the inning led to the first of four UAlbany errors in the second game, which allowed Binghamton to cross the plate on a double-play attempt with the bases loaded and no outs.
Unlike the first game, where UAlbany struggled to connect offensively, Lagravinese led off the bottom of the first with a double to right-center, and advanced to third to threaten early two batters later. Lagravinese was ultimately stranded on third when Wangenstein struck out to end the inning.
The Great Danes tied the game in the bottom of the third. Lagravinese hit his second double to left center, putting a runner in scoring position with two outs. Kondo drew a walk ahead of Collins singling through the right side and driving in Lagravinese from second.
Binghamton responded immediately, scoring four runs in the top of the fourth, and then four more in the top of the sixth. UAlbany never threatened again, with only two more runners reaching base safely in the final four innings. Binghamton added two insurance runs in the top of the seventh to claim an 11-1 victory and earn a double-header split.
For the day, Binghamton managed to out-hit UAlbany 24-10 overall, including 13-5 in the second game. Dominic Savino lasted 5.0 innings on the mound in Game Two, allowing five runs, only one of which was earned, on six hits and two strikeouts. Lagravinese hit 2-3 with two doubles and one run scored. Binghamton’s starter in the second game, Shenendehowa product Ben Anderson, pitched a complete game with one run on five hits with seven strikeouts and two walks.
Next: The Great Danes will wrap the three-game set with Binghamton with one game on Sunday, March 31 at 2:30 p.m.