CENTRAL ISLIP, NY - The Somerset Patriots (37-23) earned a split of their four-game series against the Long Island Ducks (30-30) Thursday night with a 9-2 victory at Bethpage Ballpark.
Somerset got the scoring started in the top of the second when Tyler Bortnick was hit by a pitch with the bases-loaded. The lead increased to 2-0 in the third on a two-out RBI double from Kyle Roller to deep left-center field.
Scott Kelly scored on a wild pitch in the fourth before Greg Golson (4) sent a solo home run over the left-field wall in the fifth to increase Somerset’s lead to 4-0.
The Patriots later added runs on bases-loaded walks in the sixth and seventh, along with a Christian Marerro RBI single in the seventh to take a 7-0 advantage.
Lew Ford’s (3) solo home run in the bottom of the seventh made it a 7-1 score before Mark Minicozzi (1) launched a two-run shot in the eighth to boost the lead out to 9-1. Jordan Pacheco (1) topped off the scoring in the ballgame with a solo homer in the bottom of the eighth.
Somerset’s starting pitcher David Kubiak (3-5) earned the win, allowing just one run on three hits with a season-high nine strikeouts. He needed just 90 pitches to get through seven innings on two-days rest.
“My strategy going in was to keep the pitch count down and get quick outs,” said Kubiak after the game. “I threw the curveball well, the changeup was in the zone, but the main thing was just getting ahead of batters early. Having 0-1, 0-2 counts was huge.”
Long Island starter Dennis O’Grady (3-4) suffered the loss, yielding four runs (three earned) on four hits and five walks over five innings of work.
Somerset returns home Friday night to open a three-game series against the New Britain Bees at TD Bank Ballpark.