Binghamton Wins First Baseball Championship In Early Morning Hours
ENDICOTT, N.Y.--In a game that lasted five hours and 21 minutes and ended at 3:06 Sunday morning, Binghamton captured its first-ever America East Baseball Championship by defeating second-seeded Albany, 16-6. at Pete Sylvester Field in Endicott, N.Y.
Top-seeded Binghamton (29-20) scored 37 runs en route to the program's first NCAA Championship berth, tying the number of runs by one team under the current four-team, double-elimination format.
The NCAA Selection Show will air live on ESPN on Monday, May 25 at 12:30 p.m.
The Bearcats built their large lead with three runs in the second inning and their second six-run stanza of the tournament in the fourth inning. With three more in the fifth, Binghamton found themselves with a 12-0 lead before Albany (26-31-1) picked up their first on a sacrifice fly to deep left field by Gary Pitcheralle in the bottom of the fifth frame.
Binghamton second baseman Jim Calderone, the tournament's Most Outstanding Player, led the offensive production with a 3-for-5 night, including a double, three RBI and a run scored. He hit .615 for the tournament in three games and tallied six runs.
With two runs in each the seventh and the eighth innings, and a fantastic defensive play in the top of the ninth by Dave West who laid out in center field to make a catch and prevent an extra base hit by Kyle Klee, Albany made a fine effort to rally back.
A solo shot by Binghamton's Joe Charron later in the ninth, though, sealed the deal for the Bearcats, extending the advantage to 11 runs.
West, also named to the All-Tournament Team, went 3-for-5 with a double in the championship game.
Bearcat starting pitcher Jeff Dennis earned the win with a seven-inning outing, scattering four hits and striking out nine Great Danes. He waited through several weather delays during his performance, including one that lasted one hour and 53 minutes in the bottom of the first inning due to lightning in the Greater Binghamton area.
Earlier in the day, the luck ran out for the Vermont Catamounts (23-33), the three seed, as they dropped a 10-9 elimination contest to Albany.
After a 58 minute delay for lightning in a one-run game with one out in the top of the ninth inning, Albany closer Alexander Beaulieu threw his second inning in relief and shut down Vermont to earn the save. Teammate Sean Gregory, who threw the sixth and seventh innings earned the victory.
Great Dane catcher Ryan Gugel, an All-Tournament selection, recorded a career-high four hits in six at-bats, scoring two runs and driving in two more. Rightfielder Brendan Rowland and designated hitter Jim Banks also batted in two runs to pace Albany.
Vermont's 3-4-5 batters Matt Duffy, Justin Milo and Ethan Paquette also registered multi-RBI games with two apiece. Catamount leftfielder/reliever Tom Kelly took the loss after coming to the mound in the eighth inning.
2009 America East Baseball All-Tournament Team
Chad Marshall, Stony Brook
Dave Soltis, Vermont
Ethan Paquette, Vermont
David Kubiak, Albany
Dave West, Albany
Ryan Gugel, Albany
Mike Augliera, Binghamton
Jim Calderone, Binghamton - Most Outstanding Player
Jeff Dennis, Binghamton
CJ Lukaszewski, Binghamton