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Pioneers Walk Off in Nightcap to Split with Altoona.

Pioneers celebrate walk-off win

Andy Pichardo (Queens/Academy of American Studies) hit a two-out walk-off double as Alfred State defeated Penn State Altoona 7-6 to earn a split with the Lions in a AMCC doubleheader on Saturday afternoon. The Lions won the opener 9-3.

In game two, Catcher Cumming got the Lions on the board in the 1st when he lifted a two out, two-run homer. In the bottom of the inning, Colin Johnson (Alfred Almond) hit a sac fly and Connor Pingitore (Amsterdam/Broadalbin Perth) followed with a RBI single to tie it up.

The game remained 2-2 until the 5th when Chase Clouser hit a RBI double to give the Lions back the lead. In the bottom of the inning, the Pioneers took their first lead of the afternoon. Pichardo and Danny Doran (Irondequoit) drew two out walks before Samuel Dickerson (Cutchogue/Mattituck) delivered the game-tying single to left and Doran came around to score on throwing error on the same play. In the 7th, Tim Holler (Brewster) led off with a triple to right center. One batter later, Mike Gibson (Schenectady) lifted a sac fly to give the Pioneers a 5-3 lead.

The Lions didn't go away as they put the first two batters on base in the 8th and George Stiuso hit a three-run homer to right to give Altoona the 6-5 lead. Jarrod Deaton (Newburgh Free) came out of the pen for the Pioneers and retired six straight to keep the game at 6-5 setting up the walk-off opportunity.

In the 9th, Josh Laurie (LeRoy) drew a leadoff walk. After Altoona retired the next two batters Justin LoTemple (Greece Athena) laced a double down the left field line setting up Pichardo. Pichardo found the gap in right center allowing both Laurie and pinch runner Graham Poag (Glens Falls) to score and send the Pioneers into a celebration.

Pingitore was the lone Pioneer with multiple hits finishing 2 for 3 with a RBI. Pichardo was 1 for 3 with two waks and Deaton earned the victory with two perfect innings of relief to improve to 2-0 on the year. 

In the opener, the Lions jumped out the lead with four hits in the second that led to a pair of runs. Austin Anderson had a RBI double and Richard Carey followed with a RBI single. They added another run in the 3rd when Cather Cumming hit a sac fly to score Chase Clouser who had led the inning off with a triple.

Doran collected the Pioneers first hit of the game and got the home team on the board when he lifted his fourth homer of the season over the left field fence to lead off the 4th.

The Lions answered back in the 5th with a pair of runs. Cumming hit his second consecutive sac fly and Stephen Shanne followed with a two-out single to center.

In the 6th, Doran led off the inning with single and two batters later Johnson lifted his third long ball of the season to pull the Pioneers within two, 5-3. The Pioneers had the tying run at bat with one out but could not get any closer.

Altoona put the game out of reach with four runs in the 7th. They took advantage of a pair of walks and a pair of hit by pitches in the inning.

Doran finished the opener 3 for 4 with a RBI as he collected half of the Pioneers hits.

Clay Hain threw the complete game to earn the victory. He allowed six hit and three runs while walking three and striking out four. Anderson was 2 for 3 with a pair of RBI while Clauser was 2 for 3 with three runs scored.

Alfred State finishes the week with a 5-1 mark and are now 11-11 overall and 4-4 in AMCC play. Altoona is 13-9 overall and 4-2 in AMCC play as they head to Hilbert tomorrow for another conference doubleheader.

The Pioneers are back in action on Tuesday when they host Keuka in a 4 p.m. contest (1 nine inning contest).

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