Dutchmen Win G1 of DH, Rain Halts G2

By: Jason Palatsky

July 2, 2023
(UTICA, NY)-- The Albany Dutchmen hit the road for Utica Sunday, and would end up facing more than just one familiar foe.
After the Dutchmen took the 2-1 victory over the Blue Sox in the first game of the doubleheader, (more) rain and diminishing field conditions would suspend the remainder of game two after two and a half innings. 
Albany would get off to a quick start in the opening half of the doubleheader, as after Anthony Paskell (Rider) took a hit by pitch on the fourth pitch of the game, back-to-back singles from Tyler Kipp (Fairfield) and Austin Francis (NJIT) would give the visitors the early lead.
Utica would strike back quickly however, as back-to-back singles of their own from Andre Demetral (Northern Illinois) and Norris McClure (Spring Hill College) paired with a Dutchmen error would tie the game at one after one.
The Dutchmen would generate traffic on the bases in four of the next five innings before breaking through in the seventh. Paskell would lead off the top of the final frame with a single before a bad throw on Vince Venditti’s (St. Rose) bunt single would put runners on second and third with no one out. Kipp would follow with a high chopper that required a diving stop from Demetral at short with the infield in, giving Paskell enough time to cross home and give the Dutchmen the lead.
While the Dutchmen generated their fair share of baserunners, their pitching staff would do their job and limit the Blue Sox bats from doing much. Grant Smeltzer (Fairfield) would get his second start of the summer and throw four solid innings, allowing just two hits, one run (not earned), and two walks while striking out three. Brayden Childress (Warner) would follow with two hitless innings, where he also walked two and struck out three, and would pick up his first win of the summer. Nick Kolze (Heartland CC) would come on and throw a 1-2-3 seventh to pick up his first save in a Dutchmen uniform.
Paskell would reach base all four times he stepped to the plate in game one, registering a 1-for-1 line with a pair of walks and a hit by pitch to go with the lone two Dutchmen runs. Kipp and Francis would each go 1-for-3 with their RBIs, with Kipp adding a walk to his ledger.
Albany would serve as the home team in the backend of the doubleheader, as the two squads would look to make up a previously lost game at Dutchmen Field and do not have a scheduled meeting in Guilderland the rest of the summer.
Utica would put up what currently stands as the only run from game two in the top of the first, as Ben Partridge (Rockland CC) would lead off with a walk before advancing to third on an error and a fielder’s choice and scoring on a delayed double steal.
Game two starter CJ Kuentzel (Iona) would show lots of resilience in his three innings on the mound, fighting through not just the conditions, but also escaping trouble. In both the second and third innings, Utica would put runners on second and third with no one out and add a walk with two outs to load the bases, but both times Kuentzel would get flyouts to strand the bases loaded. 
Kipp would draw a leadoff walk in the bottom of the second to be the lone Dutchmen baserunner in game two before the two Head Coaches met with the umpires and decided the field was unplayable. 
The final time the two teams are scheduled to meet in 2023, on July 26th, is already a doubleheader. The organizations will work with the league to determine if the game can and will be resumed at a later date. Albany has Monday off before hitting the road again on Tuesday and returning to action in Oneonta to face the Outlaws at 6:00 PM. Wednesday is another scheduled off day before the Dutchmen return to Dutchmen Field on Thursday for a doubleheader with the Glens Falls Dragons, set for 5:00 PM.

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