Farmingdale, N.Y. - The Farmingdale State baseball team defeated Old Westbury, 8-5, this afternoon to win the Skyline Conference Championship. The top-seeded Rams won all three of their playoff games and have earned the conference's automatic bid into the 2019 NCAA Division III Baseball Regionals. Farmingdale State claimed its eighth Skyline Title in program history and return to the NCAA Regionals for the first time since 2014.
FSC's (32-7) Nick Attardi (Smithtown, N.Y.) opened the game by reaching base on a fielding error and advanced to second after junior center fielder Vincent Napolitano (Bellmore, N.Y.) walked. In the next at-bat, junior right fielder Vincent Rice (Massapequa Park, N.Y.) hit a 2 RBI double to right center to put the Rams on top, 2-0.
After Attardi led off the top of the third with a walk, he came around to score on a Napolitano RBI double to left center field. Napolitano later moved to third on a wild pitch and scored on a Ryan DePalma (Albertson, N.Y.) sacrifice fly as Farmingdale State increased the lead to 4-0. Two batters later, an RBI single to center from junior first baseman Morgan McCarthy (Oceanside, N.Y.) plated Michael Amandola (North Babylon, N.Y.) and put FSC out in front, 5-0.
With two outs and no one on in the bottom of the fourth, Old Westbury (23-16-1) registered three straight walks to load the bases. In the next two at-bats, the Panthers used a walk and hit batter to score two runs and cut the deficit to 5-2. Senior shortstop Mike Manetta (Farmingdale, N.Y.) followed with an RBI single to right which scored a pair of runs and pulled OW within one, 5-4.
Farmingdale State responded with a run in the top of the fifth on a two out Amandola RBI single to right which scored Rice and brought the advantage back to two.
With one out in the top of the sixth, senior shortstop Shawn Blasberg (Sound Beach, N.Y.) hit a single to right and advanced to third base on a fielding error. Junior second baseman Tyler Schrimpf (Miller Place, N.Y.) drove Blasberg in with a fielders choice to the second baseman as the Rams increased the lead to 7-4.
In the bottom of the sixth, Old Westbury used singles by Michael Borsch (Flushing, N.Y.) and Drew Robertson (Roosevelt, N.Y.) and a Manetta walk to load the bases with two outs. FSC senior Matthew Constantine (West Babylon, N.Y.), who pitched 8.1 innings in FSC's previous game, forced a pop up to the third baseman to end the threat and keep the Rams ahead by three, 7-4.
Robertson brought the Panthers two within two runs, 7-5, in the bottom half of the seventh on an RBI double to left field.
Leading 8-5 heading into the bottom of the ninth, the Rams brought in junior Steven Burke (North Babylon, N.Y.) who pitched a 1-2-3 inning to seal the 8-5 victory.
Rice, who was named the Most Outstanding Player of the Tournament, went 2-for-5 at the plate with a pair of doubles, a run scored and 2 RBI. DePalma had two doubles and an RBI, while McCarthy was 2-for-4 at the plate with a run batted in.
Senior Ryan Mallon (Deer Park, N.Y.) earned the win and improved to 3-0 after allowing three hits and no runs in two innings of relief. Junior Steven Burke (North Babylon, N.Y.) recorded his second save of the year after pitching a perfect ninth inning and junior Nicholas Rooney (Ridge, N.Y.) received a no decision after starting and tossing 3.2 shutout innings.
For OW, Robertson, Manetta and senior first baseman John Condon (Oceanside, N.Y.) each had two hits.
The NCAA Selection Show will be held on Monday, May 13th at noon on NCAA.com.