Chris Pindar hit a three-run triple Sunday and fellow Oneonta High graduate Mike Calkins earned the pitching win for the Oneonta Outlaws, who opened the New York Collegiate Baseball League’s best-of-three championship series with a 10-5 victory over the Hornell Dodgers at Damaschke Field.
The game drew an announced attendance of 1,872 fans for the top-seeded Outlaws, who advanced to the finals after clinching a best-of-three semifinal series Saturday night at Damaschke Field with a 4-3 defeat of the fifth-seeded Olean Oilers.
Heath Holder and Brandon Stephens opened the bottom of the second inning Sunday with back-to-back singles off losing pitcher Brett Buchanan, who then walked Howard Joe with one out. Pindar followed with a triple to center field, giving the Outlaws (28-16) a 3-2 lead.
Pindar made it 4-2 when he scored on a groundout to shortstop by Ryan Tomita.
Stephens and Tomita each hit sacrifice flies in the third and fourth innings, respectively, before second-seeded Hornell scored twice in the fifth off Oneonta reliever Jacob Cryts to pull to 6-5.
Oneonta added two unearned runs in the sixth as Jake Levine and Pindar scored when Hornell’s Chris Roeder misplayed a grounder by Mitch Hollander.
That was more than enough for Calkins, who relieved Cryts with one out and a runner at second in the top of the sixth. Calkins allowed one hit but faced the minimum over his 3 2/3 innings of relief thanks to a seventh-inning double play that followed a leadoff single by Aaron Haag.
Calkins struck out three and walked none in earning his first NYCBL postseason victory. After going 1-1 with a 7.83 ERA during the regular season, Calkins has yet to allow a run in 5 2/3 innings of postseason relief.
Stephens (three RBIs) and Hollander (two RBIs) had three hits apiece for the Outlaws, who got two hits and two runs from Holder.
Pindar, Hollander and Joe also scored two runs apiece, and Tomita finished with two RBIs.
Oneonta visits Hornell at 7 tonight in the second game of the championship series. Should the Outlaws win tonight, it will mark their second NYCBL championship in three seasons. An Oneonta loss tonight means the Outlaws will host Hornell at 7 p.m. Tuesday in a winner-take-all third game.
Outlaws 4, Oilers 3
Brandon Stephens struck out two in a 1-2-3 ninth inning Saturday as Oneonta clinched its best-of-three NYCBL semifinal series with a victory over Olean at Damaschke Field.
Oneonta starter Matthew Milburn scattered seven hits, struck out five and walked none in 3 1/3 scoreless innings.
Winning pitcher Brandon Agar, who had six saves during the regular season, then took over and threw 2 2/3 innings of scoreless ball, striking out three and walking one.
Outlaws manager Joe Hughes went to first baseman Heath Holder for the next two innings on the mound. Holder allowed three earned runs on two hits in the seventh but followed with a 1-2-3 eighth to set up Stephens — another regular in the field this season — for the save.
Stephens struck out Tim Ravel on a chest-high fastball that sparked a near-riot between Olean and the four-man umpire crew. An Olean player was ejected as a result.
Holder singled and later came home on a wild pitch to open the scoring in the second inning.
Oneonta took a 4-0 lead in the fifth as Jake Levine had an RBI single and Brian Kraft hit a two-run double.
Oneonta finished with six hits, including one by Chris Pindar.
The Cooperstown Hawkeyes (17-24) won back-to-back games at the Adirondack Trail Blazers on Saturday in the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League, following a 3-1 victory with a 6-0 win.
Eann Cox struck out nine and walked three in a five-hitter for the pitching victory in the opener, which featured two hits apiece from Austin March and Ryan Hanahan.
The Hawkeyes also got a complete game from Colton Kibler in the nightcap. He struck out nine and walked one in a two-hitter for Cooperstown, which received two RBIs from Brendan O’Reilly.
Cooperstown, which is last in the five-team East Division, visits Albany at 7:05 p.m. today.