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Defense sinks Crosscutters in opener

Nicolas Torres
Nicolas Torres scored three runs in Williamsport’s season opening loss at the hands of the State College Spikes. (Photo courtesy Williamsport Crosscutters)

The Williamsport Crosscutters committed seven errors in their season-opening loss to the State College Spikes, falling 4-3 at home.

The Crosscutters offense got off to a quick start, plating the game’s first run thanks to a Logan Simmons sacrifice fly to deep center field scoring Nicolas Torres, giving Williamsport a 1-0 advantage.

State College would knot the game in the top of the third inning, as Kevin Woodall grounded back to the mound with the bases loaded. Armas flipped to the plate to retire Andres Luna for the second out, but Logan O’Hoppe‘s throw to first hit the runner, allowing Moises Castillo to score the tying run, making it 1-1.

Torres led off the Cutters third inning with a walk and scored the go-ahead run when Logan Simmons doubled down the right field line to give the Cutters a 2-1 lead. It was the second RBI of the night for Simmons and the last time the Cutters led.

Gustvo Armas started the fourth inning, but did not record an out as the first three batters reached, two of which reached on errors. Donivan Williams scored the tying run on an error by Cutters first basemen Connor Litton, making it 2-2. Abdallah Aris entered in the inning, striking out three of the four batters he faced. The only batter to reach against Aris was Andres Luna, who doubled home Matt Duce to give the Spikes a 3-2 lead. Both runs were charged to Armas.

Woodall expanded the Spikes lead in the top of the fifth inning, sending a Junior Tejada offering over the right-center wall, making it 4-2.

The Crosscutters chipped away at the deficit with a Julio Francisco RBI single to center chasing home Nicolas Torres for the third time, making it a 4-3 deficit in the bottom of the fifth inning. It was Francisco’s first RBI in the New York-Penn League since Opening Night 2018, when he homered against the Spikes.

The Crosscutters bullpen kept the Spikes off the scoreboard for the final four innings of the game, getting some big strikeouts along the way.

Williamsport had a chance to tie the game in the bottom of the ninth inning, in which Keudy Bocio led off with a double to deep left-center. Bocio was advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt by Corbin Williams. With two outs to work with, the Cutters were unable to score Bocio, falling in the season opener.

Williamsport will travel to State College tomorrow night to face the Spikes at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.

Cutter Carvings – Williamsport falls to 9-4 on Opening Night since becoming an affiliate of the Philadelphia Philles and 9-3 against the State College Spikes on Opening Night… The Cutters collected four doubles, two from D.J. Stewart… The Cutters committed 70 errors in 2018, which was the fourth fewest in the NYPL.

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