By JON RATHBUN
Times Sports Editor
Posted Jun. 30, 2014 @ 3:13 am
Updated Jun 30, 2014 at 5:29 PM
LITTLE FALLS, N.Y. — An early deficit would not derail the Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs Sunday.
The owners of the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League’s best record battled back to beat the Utica Brewers, owners of the league’s worst record, 17-9 at Veterans Memorial Park. The winners’ run total was one short of a PGCBL era franchise record.
The Brewers, losers of 11 of their last 12 games, led 7-3 after three innings and 8-5 after Corey Lerche homered with one out in the fifth.
The DiamondDawgs, meanwhile, scored in each inning except the third and took the lead for the first time with five runs in the bottom of the fifth. Mohawk Valley took advantage of two errors by Utica shortstop John Jennings to get lead. Craig Boyett, Utica’s second pitcher, walked Greg Fazio leading off. Fazio stole second base and scored when Jennings’ throw got by Lerche at first base on an infield hit by Tyler Lau. Jake Glauser drew another walk and the DiamondDawgs loaded the bases when Jennings lost control of the ball on the transfer from his glove on Trey Stover’s potential double play ball.
Colin Hawk drove in two runs with a hit past third baseman Anthony Villa, tying the game at 8. The runners held at second and third when Zach Collett grounded out but Stover scored the go-ahead run on a wild pitch with Gus Craig at the plate. Craig grounded out to second base and drove Hawk home for a 10-8 lead.
Glauser drove in a run with a single in the sixth and Mohawk Valley broke the game open after the Brewers scored their final run in the top of the seventh. Lau hit a sacrifice fly with the bases loaded and one out in the seventh and Glauser followed with a two-run single. Pinch-hitter Andy Lalonde completed the DiamondDawgs’ scoring with a three-run home run in his first Veterans Memorial Park at-bat in the eighth.
Former Little Falls Mountie Lucas Godlewski recorded his third victory after relieving Herkimer County Community College teammate Michael DeCarlo in the third inning. Godlewski allowed one run — Lerche’s home run — on two hits and two walks in 3 1/3 innings. Terry Dugdale pitched the seventh inning, Evan Kissinger the eighth, and Enzo Esposito had the only 1-2-3 inning for either team in the top of the ninth.
Each team scored a run in the first inning. Cedric Mullins drove in a run with a double and Reno Rankin hit a two-run triple in the second for Utica. Lerche hit a sacrifice fly, John Jennings had a run-scoring single, and the Brewers added a run on an error in the third.
Hawk had four hits and three runs batted in for Mohawk Valley. Stover and Fazio each had three hits; Fazio scored four runs and Stover scored three.
Mohawk Valley set its franchise scoring record July 2, 2012, in an 18-13 win over the Cooperstown Hawkeyes at Doubleday Field. The most runs the DiamondDawgs had scored at Veterans Memorial Park had been 14 in a July 26 shutout of the Adirondack Trail Blazers last summer.
The Brewers lost for the fifth time when scoring seven runs or more. They battled back from a 10-1 deficit in their previous game Friday in Boonville and lost 13-11 to the Trail Blazers.
Mohawk Valley has a day off Monday and travels to Utica Tuesday
to meet the Brewers again at Murnane Field. The DiamondDawgs are back home Wednesday and Thursday, taking on Amsterdam and Watertown.