YORK, PA – The York College baseball team concluded their 2008 campaign with an 11-2 defeat at the hands of visiting Ithaca College Sunday afternoon. The Spartans finish their season with a mark of 14-28 while the Bombers improve to 27-11 on the year.
The visitors jumped out on top early tallying three runs in the top of the first inning. A David Ahonen walk was followed by a double from starting pitcher Shane Wolf. With runners on second and third and only one down, Rob Raux brought in the game’s first run with a sacrifice fly to center. Josh Smith then received a free pass after being hit by a pitch, then Drew Ash roped a double to the right-center field gap to plate both Wolf and Smith.
In the top of the third, the Bombers struck again, this time bringing home four runs. Ithaca loaded the bases to start their half inning. After York’s Jason Christenberry (Yoe, Pa./Dallastown) coaxed a pop-out from Ash, Eric Ferguson poked a triple into the gap in right-center pushing across a trio of scores. Ferguson then trotted home on a T.J. Abone single to left. The Spartans suddenly found themselves down 7-0.
Ithaca would tack on a pair of runs in their half of the fifth to increase their advantage to 9-0.
Up to the bottom of the fifth inning, Bomber starter Wolf had not allowed a hit and had faced the minimum through four innings. With two outs in the Spartans’ half of the fifth, Steve Pokopec (York, Pa./Northeastern) finally reached Wolf when the third baseman knocked a double to left. Ithaca left-fielder Raux, nearly made the catch but the tough play resulted in Pokopec standing safely on second. Freshman C.T. Stanley (Timonium, Md./Calvert Hall College) then continued his solid late season play with a single through the left side of the infield to plate Pokopec and stop the shut-out bid.
Ithaca would answer with two more runs in the sixth assisted by several Spartan miscues. The two scores pushed the visitors’ total to eleven and would prove be the last the Bombers would plate for the day.
York then made the score slightly more respectable in the bottom of the sixth. Jim Meehan (Mastic, N.Y./Eastport-South Manor Central) ripped a shot off the base of the wall in left-center for a solid double. Meehan then scooted over to third on a ground-out from Rob Klinck (Stanhope, N.J./Lenape Valley Regional) and was brought home on a Mike Connolly (Selden, N.Y./Newfield) single up the middle.
The final three innings would leave both teams begging as the final score line read: Ithaca 11, York 2.
Wolf picks up the win for the Bombers and improves to 9-1 on the season as he threw six strong innings including 4.2 of no-hit ball. Senior Louie Carminati, who drew the start for the Spartans in his final collegiate game, took the loss to fall to 0-1.
For Ithaca, Ash was 3-for-6 with a pair of runs batted in and two doubles while Ferguson was 2-for-5 with three R.B.I. Wolf went 2-for-4 from the dish and plated one run. Ahonen also recorded two hits in four at-bats for the Bombers.
York scattered five hits among five batters including Stanley’s and Connolly’s R.B.I. knocks as well as Dennis Maxim’s (Port Jefferson Station, N.Y./St. Anthony's) roped double off the center field wall in his final collegiate at-bat.
The loss closes out a tough season for the York side. The Spartans now bid adieu to seniors Carminati, Maxim, and Mike Santoro (Manalapan, N.J./Manalapan) and begin to prepare for the 2009 campaign.
Rob Klinck photo courtesy of Scott Guise