Wet weather early in the first full week of May nearly caused havoc with the schedule of Chittenango’s baseball and softball teams, but things had settled down by week’s end and, more importantly, both sides were doing well.
The baseball Bears, who sneaked into the no. 20 spot in the latest state Class A rankings, beat the precipitation during last Monday’s game against Cortland and overcame a sluggish effort at the plate with a pair of late runs to earn a 3-2 victory over the Purple Tigers.
Neither team scored until the bottom of the fourth inning, when Chittenango inched into a 1-0 lead. Cortland used run-scoring hits from J.P. Reagan and Devin Darrow to move in front, 2-1, in the top of the fifth.
But the Bears had the last move, scoring twice in the bottom of the sixth. Devin Christopher, pitching in relief of Wes Burghardt, got the win, though it took Greg Jasek tossing a scoreless seventh inning to earn the save. Burghardt, Jasek and Brad Phelps each had one RBI.
With Tuesday’s game against East Syracuse-Minoa rained out, the Bears returned to play Thursday, against Mexico, and the two days of rest refreshed the Bears, who roared past the Tigers by an 11-1 margin.
A pair of first-inning runs pushed Chittenango in front, but it had to wait until the bottom of the fifth to break it open as, ahead 3-1, the Bears scored five times to chase out Mexico starter Clayton Loomis.
Jasek went three-for-three, with two doubles and three RBIs. Burghardt, Devin Christopher and Aaron Endres each notched two hits, with Christopher earning a pair of RBIs. Phelps, Erik Kurz and Josh Cretaro each drove in one run.
Sean Cliff didn’t need that much run support, as the Bears pitcher struck out four, holding the Tigers to six hits, five of them singles.