FERRUM, VA-The York College baseball team saw their stellar 2007 campaign come to a close with a 17-9 loss to the host Ferrum College Panthers in an NCAA Tournament elimination game on a sun-splashed Saturday afternoon in Ferrum, VA. The Spartans conclude the season with a mark of 32-14 while the Panthers advance to the tournament's championship round with a mark of 26-17. The Panthers face Emory University, the tournament's top seed, later today. The Panthers must beat Emory twice to advance to the Division III College World Series in Appleton, WI.
The Spartans jumped out early with two runs in the first. The Panthers answered with one in the bottom of the first and two in the bottom of the second for the 3-2 lead. The green and white recaptured the lead with a two spot in the top of the third as the game featured back-and-forth offense. The Panthers tied the game in the bottom of the third before York took one final lead, 5-4, with a Ryan Poff (York, PA/Spring Grove) RBI single in the fourth. The hosts tallied two in the bottom of the fourth to take the 6-5 lead. York tied the game one final time with an Anthony Anzalone (Rocky Point, NY/Rocky Point) RBI double to right, scoring Dennis Maxim (Port Jefferson Station, NY/St. Anthony's) who walked to lead off the inning.
The Panthers then blew the game wide open with five runs in the fifth and six in the sixth, turning a 6-6 game into a 17-8 lead. Ferrum's five run fifth featured five hits and one Spartan error while the six-run sixth saw the Panthers bang out four hits while the green and white had two miscues.
John King earned the win in relief as he tossed five innings, allowing four runs, three earned, on six hits with five walks and two strikeouts. He improves to 2-1. Justin King started and allowed five runs, two earned, on six hits, four walks, and two strikeouts.
Junior Tim Frisch (New Freedom, PA/Susquehannock) started on just one day rest as the Spartan pitching staff was exhausted. He allowed nine runs, six earned, on nine hits in four innings of work. He falls to 6-4 as he struck out three and walked one.
Matt Gammon paced the Ferrum offense as he was 4-for-5 with two runs scored and two RBI. Brett Thomas, the USA South Athletic Conference Player-of-the-Year, was 3-for-6 with three runs scored. Jesse Fuller added two hits, four RBI and a run scored while catcher Nick Baker was 2-for-5 with two RBI and a run scored.
Poff led the green and white as he was 4-for-5 with three runs scored and an RBI. Freshman Mike Connolly (Selden, NY/Newfield) was 2-for-2 with four walks, and two runs scored while Maxim was 2-for-3 with a pair of RBI and a pair of runs scored. Senior Bryan Bednarczyk (Columbia, MD/River Hill) contributed two hits in his final appearance in the green and white while fellow senior Jeff Young (Wilmington, DE/Brandywine) had a hit and was on-base three times for the game.
The game closed out the fine careers of Young, Bednarczyk, captain Chris Brower (Mont Clare, PA/Spring Ford), and pitcher Brendan Gilroy (Ridley Park, PA/Ridley). The foursome combined to make two NCAA Tournament appearances as the Spartans won 112 games over the last four years. The 32 wins this year is two short of the school record of 34 that was established by the 2002 Spartan squad that finished as the runner-up in the Winston-Salem Regional.