CROSS RIVER, N.Y.— Over the course of a season, eventually every baseball team has a bad day, and that was the case for the North Salem varsity team as it traveled to John Jay-Cross River on Saturday. A rainy day, a muddy field, one bad inning and the Tigers suffered their first loss of the season after winning their first six games.
It started out well for the Tigers with the score tied 1-1 after the first inning, but it unraveled in the second inning as John Jay scored five runs to open a 6-1 lead. It went downhill from there as the host Indians pulled away for a 15-2 victory and North Salem fell to 6-1 overall on the season.
“Playing a bigger school, we just didn’t execute and they put it to us,” North Salem coach Rob Gilchrist said. “Our pitching and defense let us down. It was our first loss. It’s early and we’ll bounce back.”
In the first inning, North Salem got on the board as Rian Balbino led off with a walk. Adam Concadoro also walked and Jesse Fleming drove in Balbino with a sacrifice fly for a 1-0 lead.
John Jay answered to tie it up in the bottom of the first, and North Salem got back to work in the top of the second as the Tigers loaded the bases with just one out, but they were not able to push a run across the plate.
Then it was all John Jay as the Indians combined a pair of walks and errors with two doubles and two RBI singles in the bottom of the second for five runs that knocked North Salem starting pitcher Will Baumler out of the game.
Earlier in the week it was a different story for Baumler as he hurled a gem for a complete game victory at Croton-Harmon. Baumler went the distance and allowed just three hits as the Tigers dominated. Fleming led the way at the plate as he went 2 for 3 with two RBI. Anthony D’Innocenzo also went 2 for 3 with an RBI.
North Salem followed up that victory with another impressive win on the road at Putnam Valley on Wednesday, April 19. It was the Connor Mahoney show that day as he took control on the mound and at the plate to lead the Tigers to a 6-1 victory. Mahoney hurled five innings on the mound, giving up just two hits while striking out nine. At the plate he went 3 for 4 with a triple, two doubles and two RBI.
This time it was North Salem with the big inning to pull away. The Tigers took a 1-0 lead in the second inning and then scored five runs in the fourth to give Mahoney a 6-0 lead before closing it out.
North Salem was set for a busy week ahead starting off with a pair of games against league rival Pawling. The Tigers traveled to Pawling on April 24 then host Pawling on Thursday, April 27, at 4:30 p.m.
North Salem hosts a doubleheader on Saturday, April 29, as the Tigers try to squeeze games into the schedule after several rainouts. The Tigers will host Mahopac at 11 a.m., and then return to the field for a game at 4 p.m. in the afternoon against Putnam Valley.