By Akin Taylor & Vince Gasparini | April 24, 2023
Great Dane pitcher Kyle McCaffrey on the mound.
Photo Credit: Jaime Dickinson / UAlbany Athletics
Following a 1-3 week for the University at Albany baseball team, the Great Danes sit at 4-23-1 overall and 1-11 in conference. Here’s what happened.
1-2 Weekend Against UMass Lowell Ends With Thrashing
After dropping the first game of the series on Friday, April 14, 7-1, the Great Danes answered by winning a 5-4 thriller on Saturday leading into a highly anticipated Sunday rubber match with UMass Lowell.
Then the following Sunday, The Great Danes got steamrolled 11-6 by the River Hawks. The Great Danes’ Dylan Banner had a rough start in the first inning, giving a three-run home run to right field to Alex Luccini. Later in the inning, UMass Lowell’s Ryan Proto doubled to right center field to score Trey Brown, making it 4-0.
UMass Lowell’s Fritz Genther's double to right field brought in Robert Gallagher after he singled to left. Gerry Siracusa and Genther were then scored by Luccini's double, making it an 8-0 trouncing by the end of the second. As a result, Banner was pulled out thereafter for left hander Thomas Quinn.
In the top of the third, Siracusa scored from third on a throwing error from Chris Fisher, making it 9-0. After a scoreless fourth by both teams, Genther hit a home run to right center to push the River Hawks’ lead to 10-0 in the top of the fifth.
While making a routine play for the ball, for the first out of the inning, UAlbany infielder Devan Kruzinski suffered an apparent lower leg injury. The top of the inning ended with Luccini flying out to right field. The Great Danes started to look alive with Fisher getting on base on an error, followed by Luke Filippi singling up the middle to advance Fisher to second.
Another error was made by the River Hawks allowing Carson Dunkel on base and advancing Filippi and Fisher to second and third, bases loaded with one out. The Great Danes got their first run of the game when Will Feil brought Fisher home on a fielder's choice in the bottom of the fifth. However, they ended the inning leaving two runners on base.
Steven Turk stepped in for Albany at the top of the fifth for the team's fourth pitching change of the game for Thomas Quinn. Turk only gave up one earned run and one strikeout during the fifth. After Turk’s solid fifth inning run to slow the River Hawks attack, Michael DiMartino took the mound for UAlbany in the sixth. UMass Lowell's Matt Tobin brought home Ryan Proto on an RBI single in the sixth to make it 11-1.
The Danes answered back with Filippi singling to right center with the bases loaded to score Owen Silliman and Will Binder, making it 11-3. As a result, UMass Lowell changed pitchers.
In the bottom of the seventh, UAlbany scored three runs. Binder walked with the bases loaded before Dan Tauken brought home Feil on a fielder's choice. As the River Hawks tried to stop the Great Danes' attack, Micheal Simes stepped up to the mound with the bases loaded. To complete the run, Silliman singled to center field, bringing Jason Bottari home to make it 11-6 entering the eighth.
The River Hawks brought in LJ Keevan in the ninth inning to close out the game. The sophomore threw a 1-2-3 inning with one strikeout to secure the 11-6 win and the series for UMass Lowell. UAlbany head coach Jon Mueller acknowledged that his squad had a rough start but also recognized his squad's resilience, despite falling short. “We battled back in the middle, but it wasn't enough today,” Mueller said.
Blowout Loss For UAlbany Men’s Baseball Against Central Connecticut State
On Tuesday, UAlbany lost to the Central Connecticut State University Blue Devils in an 11-1 blowout home loss at Varsity Field.
The Blue Devils broke out the scoring in the top of the second inning off of a two-run home run to left field by sophomore Josh Taylor. The Great Danes slightly bounced back in the bottom of the second off of a groundout by Ryan Ferremi in which Will Binder scored, but that was the only run of the day for the Great Danes.
The Blue Devils followed up with a deep three-run blast to left field off of the bat of Ramon Jimenez in the third, his eighth home run of the year. Jimenez is now fifth in the Northeast Conference in home runs.
CCSU continued their high-scoring bout in the top of when Dan Hussey scored on a pass ball, along with a five-run sixth, which included a home run off the bat of Hussey.
The Great Danes ran through five pitchers in the loss, with their starter Kyle McCaffrey taking the defeat, having allowed the first four runs of the game which the Great Danes never answered. McCaffrey only pitched three innings before being taken out by sophomore Joe Tobia.
“Today we gave up a few home runs, we weren't able to muster much offensively so we kind of got behind early and it's kind of been some of the tone over the last couple of weeks,” Jon Mueller said after the game.
Short Snapshot: Winless Against Bryant
UAlbany’s woes continued this weekend in a three-game series at Bryant which they finished without a victory. With defeats by scores of 17-11, 10-1, and 7-5, the Great Danes are 1-18 since March 19.