NEW HARTFORD — An outstanding pitching performance by Robby Knowles highlighted the Clinton County Senior Mariners’ 4-1 victory over Melvin Roads on Friday in the New York State American Legion Tournament.
The Mariners (27-8), 3-0 in the double-elimination event, also defeated Middletown Post 13-5 Friday night — details of the game will be in Sunday’s edition. They are back on the field today at 8 p.m.
Knowles struck out two, walked three and surrendered three hits. His teammates made just one error behind him.
“Robby was in command,” Mariners coach Matt Tolosky said. “He showed confidence on the mound and kept a good-hitting team off balance.
“He was certainly effective at getting ground balls and didn’t allow Melvin Roads to get good wood on the ball. That helped allow our team to gain confidence on defense.”
The Mariners, who rapped out 19 hits in an 11-8 decision over Ferris Goodridge two days before, had 10 hits against Melvin Roads, which had recorded a 14-1 first-round victory over New Hartford.
Chris Roenbeck led the way with a double and singles, while Knowles added two singles and two RBI. Ryan Meyer contributed a triple, Tanner Rascoe a double, and Jack Tolosky, Adam Goldfarb, Logan Recor and Mitch Cunningham a single each. Tolosky reached base all four times with a base hit and three walks. He also stole two bases.
“We were rock solid again offensively,” Tolosky said. “We didn’t strike out very much and hit some hard shots that were caught.
“Right now, you never know what player is going to come up big for us. You never know who is going to get a big single, double, triple, sacrifice bunt or walk. We’re getting contributions from everyone.”
Melvin Roads broke on top with a run in the bottom of the first inning. Greg Ruddy led off with a single, took second on an error, was sacrificed to third and scored on John Stanley’s single to right field.
It stayed that way until the third when Meyer tripled and crossed the plate on Knowles’ two-out single to left field.
“Ryan has been hitting the ball well and he set the table for us,” Tolosky said. “That was a big hit to get us going.”
The Mariners then took the lead for good in the fifth. Tolosky walked, took second on a wild pitch, went to third on Goldfarb’s single and scored on a safety-squeeze bunt by Knowles.
“We’re a team that likes to stick with the basics and we like to use small ball when called upon,” Tolosky said. “It worked out well for us.”
Clinton County got two more in the sixth to get some breathing room. Roenbeck and Rascoe hit back-to-back doubles, with Rascoe getting an RBI. Tolosky then delivered an RBI single to plate Rascoe and make it 4-1.
“Roenbeck and Rascoe got us going that inning and Jack added to his big day,” Tolosky said.
Knowles, who retired 12 in a row at one time, walked two in the seventh. But a pop out to the mound ended the game.
Christian Maldonado started for Melvin Roads and took the pitching loss.
Because of the inclement weather the day before, all games have been switched from nine to seven innings.
Mariners 4, Melvin Roads 1
Mariners 001 012 0 — 4 10 1
Melvin Roads 100 000 0 — 1 3 1
Knowles and Roenbeck. Maldonado, Gregware (5) and Jullian. WP- Knowles. LP- Maldonado. Roenbeck (M), Rabideau (M). HR- Meyer (M).