AMSTERDAM, N.Y. (NEWS10) — As dynamic as the Amsterdam Mohawks’ offense has been this season, it’s somewhat overshadowed a truly potent pitching staff. But the ‘Hawks arms stole the show in game one of the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League championship series Wednesday night. Jack Seppings and Peyton Fall combined to shut out the Elmira Pioneers 4-0 at Shuttleworth Park.
After Seppings tossed three scoreless frames to start the game, Amsterdam finally managed to get on the scoreboard in the bottom half of the inning. Extra hitter Cam Gurney slapped a single the other way down the third-base line, scoring Gage Miller for the first run of the evening.
Seppings’ outing concluded with a four-strikeout fifth inning – the second time he’s achieved that feat this year. The Brown University right-hander finished with five shutout innings and eight strikeouts; he allowed just three hits.
Seppings handed the ball off to Fall, who just graduated from Duanesburg High School in the spring. Fall looked cool, calm and collected in his first PGCBL postseason appearance, making quick work of the Pioneers in the sixth and seventh innings.
Mohawks first baseman Luke Longo provided Fall with a bit more insurance in the home half of the seventh. He scorched an RBI double that rolled to the wall in left-center, plating Bruer Webster. That pushed the Amsterdam edge to two runs.
The Pioneers got the tying run to the plate in the eighth, but Fall’s defense had his back. Dakota Duffalo made a diving catch while charging in from his left field position to retire the side, stranding a runner on base.
Amsterdam created even more separation in the ensuing half inning. After Jalen DeBose and Jaxson West reached safely to start the inning, DeBose was brought around on a safety squeeze from Zach Eldred – the third game in a row the Mohawks have been able to successfully execute that play.
The Mohawks tacked on one more run on a Mason Swinney RBI single, giving Fall a four-run cushion as he headed back out to the mound in the ninth.
Fall walked two batters, but battled to finish the inning, recording a game-ending punch out, which put the finishing touches on four innings of no-hit work out of the ‘pen, and secured Amsterdam a 1-0 series lead.
“Seppings we thought would be really good, and we got a real boost tonight from Fall; he was outstanding,” said head coach Keith Griffin. “Boy, those guys threw well. They (Elmira) only got three hits – a real credit to how well they threw the baseball. Our defense was spotless tonight (as well).”
The series shifts to Elmira for game two. If the Mohawks win, they’ll have secured their seventh PGCBL championship. With a loss, they’ll return home for a decisive game three Friday.
It’s a similar situation to the one the ‘Hawks found themselves in in last year’s championship series with the Batavia Muckdogs.
“This is big, because now we can go over there (Elmira) with a chance to win it (the title),” added Griffin. “We did this last year, and when we went over there, we were way overconfident. We got pinned in the first game, and had to scramble to come back and beat them in game three. So, we need to go there tomorrow and take care of business.”
First pitch from Dunn Field is set for 6:35 p.m.