Rapids Roll Into Second Round of Playoffs
It has been a season of firsts for the newest members of the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League, and the Rapids continue to add to that list. On Tuesday night, the Rapids clinched the final playoff spot and finished in second place in the Central Division.
With the win, it was a quick turnaround as Watertown was on the road to the defending PGCBL champions, Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs on Wednesday night. Addison Pawelek pitched seven strong innings for the Rapids, allowing just one run on his way to a win. Nolan Wilson and Robbie Frongello combined to take care of the final two innings with Wilson allowing one run.
At the plate, Michael Russell roped a single in the third inning to bring Samuel Neal in to score, putting the Rapids up 1-0. Mohawk Valley would answer in the sixth inning as Ryan Hernandez grounded into a double play, scoring Austin Pollack. The Rapids went right back to work, capitalizing on Mohawk Valley’s mistakes in the seventh inning. Ben Maycock lead off the inning with a walk, eventually scoring on a passed ball. Trevor Kuncl would score later in the inning on a throwing error from the DiamondDawgs’ catcher.
Taking a 3-2 lead into the final two innings, the Rapids wouldn’t look back, battling through a couple scoring threats from Mohawk Valley. As Robbie Frongello shut the door, the Rapids earned their first ever playoff victory, advancing to the second round.
Weather played a factor across the first round of the PGCBL playoffs, which resulted in delayed starts from Amsterdam versus Albany and Geneva versus Elmira. Amsterdam would go on to defeat Albany, which means the Rapids will begin the second round on the road at Amsterdam tonight at 6:35pm. This will be game one of a best-of-three series.
Game two of the series will be hosted at the Alex T. Duffy Fairgrounds in Watertown on Friday, August 3rd, with first pitch at 7:05pm. The Fairgrounds saw a very energetic crowd on Tuesday night and hope to see an even larger turnout at the first home playoff game. Gates will open at 6:00pm and depending on the outcome of tonight’s game, game two will either offer a chance for the Rapids to close out the series and move on to the championship round, or a must-win situation.