By Steven Merritt
PURCHASE – The Vassar College Baseball team opened up its season with a doubleheader split against Purchase on the road on Saturday. The Brewers earned a 4-2 victory in the first game while the Panthers recorded a walk-off 6-5 victory in the nightcap. Both teams hold records of 1-1 after the twinbill.
VC 4 – PUR 2
Vassar got on the board first in the top of the second as sophomore Ricardo Reyna reached on an infield single with one out. He advanced to third after a wild pitch and an error and then scored following a double steal where an out was record at second base but he scored on the throw. Purchase countered quickly in the bottom half of the inning as Liam Daly came all the way around the bases on an inside-the-park home run to tie the contest at one apiece.
Following a double from sophomore Birch Herring-Jackson to lead off the top of the third, he was moved to third on a single from junior Reid Lapekas and then scored on a wild pitch. Lapekas later scored following another double steal where an out was recorded and he pushed the Brewers lead to 3-1.
Sam Saltzman lined a leadoff double down the left field line in the bottom of the fourth and later scored on a VC error following a Joe Ferreri walk. The Brewers tacked on an insurance run in the top of the sixth as Reyna launched a ground-rule double and then stole third. Junior Jack Silvera laced a pinch-hit double down the left field line to score Reyna to extend the Vassar lead to 4-2.
Purchase threatened in the bottom of the seventh as Louis Carvell reached on a leadoff single followed by a two-out double from Matt Castrogiovanni to bring put the tying run in scoring position. Sophomore Jack Blau induced a game-ending groundout to close the contest and pick up the two-inning save in relief.
Junior Michael Came earned the win on the mound for Vassar as he went five innings, allowing four hits, two runs (one earned), two walks and struck out four. Blau recorded the save in his two innings of work and allowed three hits and struck out one.
Myles Scarry took the loss for Purchase as he worked four innings and allowed eight hits, three runs (two earned), one walk and struck out six. Justin Doskoez threw three strong innings in relief as he allowed two hits, one run, one walk and struck out two.
Reyna finished the day 3-for-3 at the dish while Lapekas and Herring-Jackson each recorded two hits in the contest for Vassar. Castrogiovanni tallied two hits for the Panthers as Daly finished with his first home run of the season.
PUR 6 – VC 5
The two teams were scoreless in the opening two innings before senior Andrew Kanellis and Silvera went back-to-back for their first homers of the season to put VC ahead 2-0 in the top of the third. The Brewers added a third run in the inning after senior Adam Talkwalkar walked and then was driven in by sophomore Daniel Laderman with two outs.
Purchase got on the board in a big way in the fifth as they loaded the bases with one out after a walk, a single and a throwing error. Saltzman drove in two with a ground-rule double and then Daly homered for the second time on the day to give the Panthers a 5-3 lead after five innings.
Laderman led off the top of the sixth with a single and senior Christian Baaki walked to put the tying run on base. With two outs, Reyna split the left center game to score Laderman and pinch-runner senior Alex Warren to tie the game at five.
In the bottom of the seventh, Castrogiovanni walked with one out and then stole second to put the winning run in scoring position. Castrogiovanni, with two outs, singled up the middle to walk it off for the Panthers and earn a split on opening day.
Junior Joe Sabo took the no-decision in his start as he went 4.2 innings and allowed four hits, four runs (all unearned), three walks and struck out two. Senior Frankie Murphy took the loss in relief as he threw two innings and gave up two hits, two runs (one earned) and walked one.
Ryan Castrataro started for Purchase and lasted five innings while allowing six hits, four runs, three walks and struck out five. KJ Dow tallied the win in relief as he went two innings and gave up two hits, one run, one walk and struck out two.
Laderman and Reyna each had two hits in the contest while Reyna drove in two runs and Kanellis, Silvera and Laderman each drove in one for Vassar. Saltzman went 2-for-4 and drove in three runs while Daly drove in three runs on his second homer of the season.