SARATOGA — The Clinton County Senior Mariners used a big fourth inning Wednesday to pull away to a 12-2, five-inning victory over Auburn Post #20 of Cranston, R.I. in the Cooper’s Cave Tournament at East Side Recreation Park.
The Mariners (17-5), who are 2-0 in the week-long event, trailed by a 2-1 score before breaking loose for eight runs in the top of the fourth.
Andy Kneussle bunted for a hit and an RBI, Robby Knowles walked to force in a run, Ryan Meyer singled in two runs, Conor Casey had an RBI single and Blake Altizer a sacrifice fly to account for six of the runs. Altizer made two productive outs in the inning with a sacrifice bunt early in the uprising and his sacrifice fly.
Jeremy Barber went the five innings for the pitching win as he struck out one, walked two and allowed five hits.
“Barber threw with good velocity (Wednesday),” Mariners’ coach Matt Tolosky said. “He threw strikes, walking only two, and let his defense do the job behind him.”
The Mariners scored a run in the first when Jack Tolosky led off with a walk and eventually scored on Brandon Buksa’s two-out single.
It stayed that way until the bottom of the third when Auburn Post broke through against Barber with two runs on three hits to take a 2-1 advantage. The Mariners avoided further trouble when center fielder Adam Goldfarb threw a runner out at home plate for the final out of the inning.
“The throw by Goldfarb was a key in the game,” Tolosky said. “It was a close game for three innings and they would have had a 3-1 lead and still at bat if the runner wasn’t thrown out.
“The throw got us out of the inning and helped give us momentum going into the fourth.”