Rockland’s Short Porch Bites Ottawa in School Day Game Loss
By Craig Richenback
Ottawa, ON – A pair of two run homeruns by Rockland’s big bats gave the Boulders a 6-3 victory over the Ottawa Champions at Palisades Credit Union Park on Wednesday afternoon.
Jon Smith hit one off Champions starter Steve Borkowski to put the Boulders ahead 4-3 in the fourth, and reigning Can-Am League Player of the Week Cody Regis extended the lead with his own blast in the sixth, also off Borkowski.
“Steve pitched well enough to win,” said Champions manager Hal Lanier after the game. “But the ballpark and some bad umpiring behind the plate beat him.”
The Champions manufactured a run in the first inning after Adron Chambers led off the game with a double down the right field line. With one out he advanced to third on a Sebastien Boucher single and scored on a groundout by Steve Brown.
Rockland got even in bottom of the inning with a two out rally. Mike Fransoso singled off the glove of second baseman Brian Bistagne, Marcus Nidiffer walked, and Joe Maloney laced an RBI single to left.
Ottawa re-took the lead in the third when Bistagne lined a sacrifice fly to right-centre after Chambers singled, went to second on an errant pickoff attempt, and took third on a wild pitch.
Nidiffer tied things up again for Rockland with an RBI single in the bottom of the third.
After Ricky Oropesa launched a solo homerun to lead off the fourth, the Champions loaded the bases with one out but Chambers popped up and Bistagne struck out to end the inning.
Smith’s homerun in the bottom of the inning gave Rockland the lead for good.
“They have a lot of lefties who can hit it out of that ballpark,” said Lanier. “They’ve built their club to do that.”
Boucher lined a two-run homerun over the short porch in right to cut the lead to one in the ninth, but former Seattle Mariners pitcher Mayckol Guaipe still picked up his fifth save.
Rockland starter Markus Solbach (W, 2-0) kept his team in the game, allowing three runs, two of them earned, on eight hits in 6.2 innings while striking out two and walking one.
Borkowski (L, 1-2) allowed all six runs on seven hits in six innings of work while striking out five and walking four.
The Champions take on the Boulders one more time on Thursday morning at 10:30 before returning home for Gabriel Pizza weekend against the Sussex County Miners from June 2-4 at RCGT Park.