For the second straight night, a big inning sent the Spikes down to defeat at home. This time, it was in the decisive third game of the New York-Penn League Championship series.
Jimmy Reed (L, 0-1) held the Tri-City Valley Cats to two hits while striking out four over the first five. A lead-off single in the sixth plus two sac bunts, the first of which ended up with the batter on first, left runners at second and third with one out for Victor De Leon. De Leon was a pitching nightmare, coughing up a single and two wild pitches that plated both of Reed's runners before he issued a free pass that finished his stint.
Jeff Rauh walked his first batter faced to jam the sacks full before inducing a potential double-play ball. State College's defense got the 4-6 force at second but shortstop Cesar Valera's errant throw to first resulted in two runners crossing, one earned. Both tallies were pinned on De Leon. Rauh proceeded to issue two base-on-balls over 2 2/3. Mitch Harris worked around two hits in the ninth.
The Spikes struck first with a tally in the fourth. Mason Katz, our Player of the Day, lined a two-out single to center that brought across Carson Kelly after the latter reached on a force out. Katz added two more RBI in the ninth when his second post-season home run plated Michael Schulze (single) to begin the frame. Katz joined David Washington with three hits in four at bats with four other Spikes having one hit each.
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