Special to the OBSERVER
CORTLAND - Fredonia State was eliminated from the SUNYAC Tournament in heartbreaking fashion Saturday, 9-8, by the Oswego Lakers.
The Blue Devils (19-16) led 8-6 heading into the last of the ninth. The Lakers (25-14) rallied for three runs, two on a pinch-hit single by Tim Smith and the game-winner on a single by Tyler Baker.
Zach Hugg took the loss in relief. Oswego's Ryan Donovan picked up the win.
The Blue Devils led twice in the elimination game. They went up 2-0 in the second inning on a two-out, two-run single by Conner Lorenzo.
Oswego chased Fredonia State starter Zachary Jordon with two runs after five innings. He exited with his team behind 4-2.
Dillon Lowe hit a lead-off homer in the sixth inning to cut the Oswego lead to 4-3. The Lakers added two runs in the last half of the inning off reliever Kyle Grey (Frewsburg).
The Blue Devils regained the lead with four runs in the seventh. An error and singles by Jake Nowak and Brian Sheehan set the table. A second Oswego error plated the first run before John Bennett smashed a two-run single and Matt Casilio followed with an RBI single.
The inning ended when Bennett fell while rounding third and was just beat back into the bag trying to retreat to the base.
Momentum was clearly on Fredonia State's side when Bennett, playing left field, gunned down the potential tying run to end the Oswego eighth. The Blue Devils then added a would-be insurance run in the ninth on a single by Ian Gallagher and a single by Casilio.
Oswego then launched its dramatic comeback and advanced to the SUNYAC championship round. The Lakers will face tournament host Cortland, which is unbeaten so far in double-elimination play.
Gallagher finished with three hits to lead Fredonia State's 12-hit attack.
Earlier in the day, Fredonia State advanced to the semifinal round of the SUNYAC Tournament with a 6-4 win over New Paltz.
Sean Larson (Angola) and Grey (Frewsburg) combined on a seven-hitter and Kenny Johnston had three RBIs as the Blue Devils improved to 19-15.
Larson overcame a rocky first inning to notch third win of the season against three losses. He retired the first New Paltz hitter before the inning turned sour.
A hit, a fielder's choice and throwing error by Larson, and a three-run homer by David Lostaglio put the Blue Devils in a early hole.
Yet Larson righted himself and left with a 6-4 lead after six innings. He allowed four runs - three earned - on six hits with two strikeouts and two walks.
The Blue Devils wasted a scoring chance in the third inning. Johnston drew a lead-off walk and moved to third on a one-out single by Lorenzo. Both were left stranded.
Fredonia State did not waste its next opportunity one inning later. Lowe singled and Ian Gallagher walked to get the inning started. After John Bennett dropped a sacrifice bunt, Casilio singled to right to score Lowe. Johnston then split the gap in right-center for a two-run double. Lorenzo capped the inning with an RBI single as the Blue Devils took a 4-3 lead.
The Blue Devils turned a lead-off walk to Gallagher into a run in the fifth. Following Bennett's second sacrifice bunt and a strikeout, Johnston singled. It was his second hit and third RBI of the game.
Fredonia State's two-run lead was shortlived as New Paltz scored its fourth run off Larson in the last of the fifth. The junior right-hander then escaped a first-and-third jam in the sixth before exiting in favor of Grey.
A junior left-hander, Grey worked three scoreless innings to pick up his second save of the season. He allowed only one hit, walked one, and had three strikeouts.
Fredonia State added an insurance run in the top of the ninth. Lowe led off the inning with a double, stole third, and scored on a sacrifice fly to center by Johnston, his fourth RBI of the game.
Men's Track & Field
Williams wins SUNYAC hurdling title
CORTLAND - Fredonia State freshman Eric Williams won the 110-meter high hurdle title Saturday at the SUNYAC Outdoor Track & Field championship Saturday.
Williams finished ahead of teammate and fifth-year senior Carl Caughell with a time of 14.70 seconds. Caughell's time was 14.96 seconds.
The Blue Devils, who finished sixth in the team standings, also had two men earn points in the 1,500 meters as freshman Collin Mulcahy was third in 3:57.12 and sophomore Zakk Hess eighth in 4:00.08.
Senior multi-athlete Spencer Lefort finished second in the decathlon with 5,798 points, while freshman Tyler Gajewski (Dunkirk) was sixth with 5,131 points, and sophomore Doug Imperi (Angola) was seventh with 4,844 points. Gajewski had the top placements of the day by any of the three - first in the discus (33.30 meters) and second in the 110 high hurdles (17.03 seconds). Lefort had two thirds - the 110 hurdles (17.13 seconds) and the pole vault (3.70 meters). Imperi's best finish was a fourth in the 1,500 meters (5:00.01).
Lefort was also sixth in the open high jump (1.88 meters).
Other Blue Devil individual point-scorers were sophomore Chris Shartrand in the 3,000 steeplechase (9:40.35) and Mulcahy eighth in the 800 (2:03.59).
The men's 4-by-100 meter relay team of Caughell, Williams, freshman Jeremy Kozlowski (Dunkirk) and senior Ron Wasik (Fredonia) finished fourth in 43.88 seconds.
Women's Track & Field
Devils seventh at
CORTLAND - Fredonia State had two fifth-place finishers Saturday at the SUNYAC Outdoor Track and Field championship meet. The Blue Devil women finished seventh in the team standings.
Freshman multi-athlete Kayleigh Wasielewski scored 3,502 points in the women's heptathlon, fifth-best of eight women, with a long jump of 4.65 meters, a javelin throw of 25.29 meters, and a time of 2:56.47 in the 800 meters.
The other fifth-place finish was turned in by the 4x100 relay of freshman Anna Dambacher, junior Emily Cummiskey, junior Lexi Perez and junior Kelci Yousett.
The rest of the day was replete with sixth-place, seventh-place, and eighth-place finishers.
Wasielewski tied for sixth in the high jump at 1.43 meters. Dambacher was sixth in the 100 (12.68 seconds) and seventh in the 200 (26.10 seconds). Cummiskey was seventh in the triple jump (10.61 meters).
In addition, Kathleen Goodberlet was sixth in the shot put (10.97 meters) and Anna Hourihan was sixth in the 5,000 (18:28.51). Jessica McClean was seventh in the discus (36.74 meters). Amanda Cocchiara was eighth in the 3,000 steeplechase (12:10.49) and Kim Foltz was eighth in the 1,500 (4:54.56).