WINTER HAVEN, Fla. — It was a frustrating day for the Plattsburgh State baseball team at the RussMatt Invitational.
The Cardinals (1-5) dropped two closely contested games to Allegheny College, 8-7 and 1-0, to fall to 1-3 on their annual trip to Florida.
In the first game, Plattsburgh fell behind 4-0 after two innings and 8-2 after four.
The Cardinals battled back and eventually cut their deficit to 8-7 with three runs in the top of the seventh. But Plattsburgh had a runner picked off second in the inning and left the bases loaded when the final out was recorded.
To make matters even worse, Plattsburgh stranded an incredible 16 runners in seven innings, including the bases loaded three times.
“When we had the runner picked off, it was clearly a balk but it wasn’t called.” Plattsburgh coach Kris Doorey said. “But we still had a chance to score after that.
“We had so many chances to score from the first inning on. It’s disappointing because I look back at the game and say we could have scored there, there or there. The most runners you can strand in a seven-inning game is 21 and we stranded 16. I think that would have to be some kind of record for us.”
Mike Kastelic led the Gators with three hits, while Zach Gray, James Kim and Eric Weyant added two each. Brandon Ellis pitched five innings for the win and Kyle Davis got the save.
Brian Latulipe rapped out four hits for the Cardinals, who had 14 hits in all. Casey Brighton followed with three, while Luke Weaver and Mike Mulvihill each added two.
Rafael Ponce, making his first-career start on the hill for Plattsburgh, couldn’t get out of the second inning, allowing two runs in each of the first two innings, before Mike Doughtie finished up.
Doughtie pitched out of a second-inning jam but allowed four runs in the fourth.
“We didn’t get a good start from our pitcher,” Doorey said.
“But we did battle back and played hard. We just weren’t able to win the game.”
In the second game, Plattsburgh received a strong pitching performance from Corey Grossman, who allowed six hits, walked one and struck out three in going the distance.
Grossman pitched a great game,” Doorey said.
The Cardinals, however, couldn’t get it going offensively against Fredonia transfer and winning pitcher Steven Ramsdell, who surrendered four hits, did not walk anyone and fanned two in going the route.
“He was more of a finesse pitcher and we didn’t adjust to him very well,” Doorey said. “He was around the strike zone all day.
“We beat him last year when he was at Fredonia.”
The only run of the game was scored in the first inning on the back end of a double steal.
“It was the first inning and we took the out at second base,” Doorey said. “I felt pretty comfortable that we would be able to score after getting 14 hits and seven runs in the opener.
“But we didn’t.”
Plattsburgh, despite getting just the four hits, got its leadoff hitter on base three times. Mulvihill led off the second with a double, Shane Houppert the sixth with a single and Mulvihill the seventh with a base hit. The Cardinals, however, weren’t able to get any of the runners across the plate.
Allegheny, with the two wins, evened its season record at 3-3.
“We’ve lost three games already by one run and I’m playing all of them back in my mind because those are games I felt we should have won,” Doorey said. “We’re still a work in progress.
“Even though we lost two games today, we played better defensively and hit the ball pretty well. But it was still a disappointing day for us and our young team is going through growing pains.
“We can only hope to get better.”
The Cardinals will look for better results when they play Hamilton College in a noon doubleheader today.
Allegheny 8, Plattsburgh 7
Plattsbugh 001 120 3 — 7 14 1
Allegheny 220 400 x — 8 12 1
Ponce, Doughtie (3) and Casten. Ellis, Voytek (6), Davis (7) and Triozzi. WP- Ellis. LP- Ponce. Sv- Davis. 2B- Chavez (PSU, Brighton (PSU), Mulvihill (PSU), Weaver (PSU), Latulipe (PSU), Davis (A), Kastelic (A), Weyant (A). 3B- Gray (A).
Allegheny 1, Plattsburgh 0
Allegheny 100 000 0 — 1 6 0
Plattsburgh 000 000 0 — 0 4 0
Ramsdell and Bronson. Grossman and Casten. WP- Ramsdell. LP- Grossman. 2B- Mulvihill (PSU).