ROCKLAND COUNTY – Ray Hernandez lined his 15th home run of the season with one out in the bottom of the seventh inning to give the New York Boulders a 2-1 win over the Washington Wild Things and a split of their doubleheader on Friday at Palisades Credit Union Park.
The solo home run made a winner of reliever Tanner Kiest, who improved to 3-5 on the year and a loser of Zach Strecker, who fell to 2-4 on the season.
New York’s Dan Wirchansky and Washington’s Ben Vicini put forth an old fashioned pitcher’s duel in game two.
The Wild Things scored a run in the first inning without the benefit of a hit. Nick Ward led off the game by reaching on a throwing error by Boulders’ shortstop Phil Caulfield. After Andrew Sohn walked, the runners pulled off a double steal. Scotty Dubrule then scored Ward with a groundout to second.
Washington would not get a hit until Hector Roa led off the fourth with a single.
Meanwhile, Wild Things’ starter Ben Vicini did not allow a hit until Caulfield led off the sixth with a double to right-center which Washington right fielder Bralin Jackson tracked down but could not hold on to after crashing into the wall. The hit ended Vicini’s night as he gave way to James Meeker.
One out later, Milton Smith, Jr.’s infield single to the left side moved Caulfield to third. Meeker then threw wildly to first on a pick off attempt that allowed Caulfield to score the tying run.
Meeker would escape without any further damage by sandwiching a walk to Kevonte MItchell with a groundout by Zach Kirtley and a line out by Ryan Ramiz.
The scoreless inning stretched Meeker’s season-long shutout streak to 27 2/3 innings in 27 appearances.
Wirchansky pitched into the seventh, leaving with one out after walking Ward in favor of Kiest, who picked off Ward, but then hit Sohn with a pitch. After walking Dubrule, Kiest struck out Jackson to end the seventh.
The Wild Things took the opening game, 6-3.
Hector Roa snapped a 3-3 tie with a two-run sixth inning home run to provide Washington with the winning run. The Wild Things tacked on an insurance run in the seventh on a double steal that saw Andrew Czech score.
The home run was Roa’s seventh of the season.
New York had jumped in front on a two-run first inning home run by Zach Kirtley, his ninth of the season.
The Wild Things cut their early deficit in half with a solo home run in the third inning by Joe Campagna, his sixth of the year. Campagna’s hit was the first base runner allowed by New York starter Andy Hammond, who set down the first seven batters he faced.
Washington went ahead 3-2 in the top of the fifth inning on a sacrifice fly by Campagna and a double from Czech; but the Boulders squared the game at 3-3 in the bottom of the frame when Kevonte Mitchell drew a bases loaded walk.
Alex Boshers got the win in the first game for the Wild Things in his first decision of the year, while Zach Strecker pitched a scoreless seventh for his 10th save of the year as four Washington hurlers limited New York to just three hits. James Mulry got the loss, falling to 3-3 on the season.
A complete New York Boulders’ 2021 schedule, as well as information regarding season tickets and packages for the 2021 season are available by calling 845-364-0009 or sliding to www.NYBoulders.com. Individual game tickets are on sale now.