PRINCE ATHLETIC COMPLEX – Visiting Clarkson University carried over a strong pitching performance from Saturday night into Sunday, posting a doubleheader sweep over the University of Rochester in Liberty League baseball action on Sunday at Towers Field.
Clarkson took game one 2-0, and then earned the sweep with a 10-2 win in the nightcap. The Golden Knights improve to 11-7 and 7-1 in the Liberty League, while Rochester evens up its record on the season, moving to 12-12 overall and 6-6 in the conference.
Game one saw just eight hits combined in a 75-minute, lightning fast contest. The pitchers duel nearly matched the games from Saturday, when both games went by 2-1 final scores. Sunday's matchup was Jack Denzer for UR against Mike Bubniak of Clarkson.
Bubniak went 6.2 innings and surrendered just three hits and one walk while striking out one. Denzer tossed a six-inning complete game and allowed five hits, two runs (1 earned) and struck out four. Mark Connor came in for the Golden Knights to record the final out of the game and picked up the save.
Clarkson scored in the opening two innings, one run each to complete the scoring. In the first, Brad Pearson looped a double down the left field line with one out and was driven in when Mike Nee singled to right field.
The second inning saw Nick Duda reach on a fielding error in the UR outfield and came around to score when Joe Stockman singled on a line drive to center field.
Rochester did not threaten until the final inning. After a flyout to start the frame, David Rieth was hit by a pitch. Another out put the Yellowjackets down to their final out, but pinch hitter Luke Piontek drew a walk to put the tying runners on.
The next batter, pinch hitter Harper Sy, reached on a fielders choice, when the CU shortstop tried to get the force out at third but couldn't get the throw off in time, loading the bases. Connor then recorded the final out of the game, getting a groundout.
Rochester's three runners left on in the final inning was an unfortunate sign of things to come in game two for the Yellowjackets. UR combined to leave 14 runners on base in game two, including five with two or more left, leading to the 10-2 Clarkson win.
The Golden Knights would again score in the bottom of the first inning, this time plating two runs of Yellowjacket starter Kevin Ho. Nolan Duda singled in Pearson who reached on a double and then later scored on a wild pitch.
Rochester got on the board in the top of the third inning. Two walks with two outs put runners at first and second. Jake Hertz then lined a base hit to right center, plating Jack Herman. After Zach Miraz drew a walk, the bases were loaded, but a groundout ended the threat, stranding three runners.
Ho settled in for UR on the mound after his rocky first inning, allowing just three hits and no walks over his final four innings of work. The senior ended the day going 5 innings, while serving up 5 hits, 2 runs, and 3 walks while striking out 2.
The Yellowjackets were able to pull even in the top of the sixth when Steve Pickering singled to right with two outs, driving in pinch-hitter Joseph Rende who reached with a single to left.
Clarkson was able to get to the Yellowjacket bullpen in the seventh inning, batting around to score five runs and break the game open, moving the score to 7-2. Trevor Van Allen started the inning for UR and gave up a single before being removed. The first-year righty would end up taking the loss for the Yellowjackets.
Pearson followed with a triple to right center for what would be the game-winning RBI. Duda then singled up the middle to score Pearson. After an error allowed Duda to score, Mike Krick doubled to left for another run, and Stockman safety squeezed in the fifth of the inning.
UR looked to answer right back in the next inning, loading the bases after a Jacob Matzat single, Rende hit by pitch, and Rieth single, but Golden Knights reliever Tommy Burns recorded a fly out and ground out to escape the jam.
Burns picked up the win for Clarkson, going 3.1 innings and scattering just four hits while striking out two. In relief of starter Ethan Kornbrek who went the first three innings, Kyle Locklear also took the mound and threw 2.2 innings of work.
Pearson led Clarkson in game two going 3-for-4 with a double and triple while scoring three times. Duda went 2-for-5 with 2 RBI and 2 runs while Krick drove in 3, had 2 doubles and two runs scored.
Rochester's Herman and Rieth went 2-for-4 in game two.
Up next, UR gets a week off before taking on St. Lawrence on the road in a four-game series next Saturday and Sunday. Clarkson plays at Oswego State on Tuesday before hosting RIT in a four-game conference weekend.