The Albany Dutchmen took the opening game of Saturday’s doubleheader against the Glens Falls Golden Eagles behind strong pitching from Spencer Hotaling (Susquehanna), but dropped the back half of the doubleheader on a walk-off home run from Rich Gugliemi (Saginaw Valley State). The Dutchmen won the first game, 3-2, and lost a 5-3 decision in the nightcap.
Albany found themselves trailing in the opener, as the Golden Eagles plated a pair of runs in the second inning. After a Kaleb Holbrook (South Georgia) single, Colton Montgomery (Georgia College) drilled a two-run homer to left field to give Glens Falls a 2-0 lead. The homer was the second homer of the year for Montgomery.
The Dutchmen began their rally in the third inning, starting with a single from Danny Hrbek (Radford). After a single from Adam Lee (Lipscomb) and a sacrifice bunt from James Locklear (Rider), Sean Aspinall (Azusa Pacific) clubbed an RBI groundout to short to score the first run of the game for Albany.
The game was then tied in the top of the fourth inning. After the inning began with two outs, Justin Brock (Franklin Pierce) was hit by a pitch, and proceeded to steal second base. Ernie Clement (Virginia) continued his hot streak with an RBI single, tying the game at two.
The lead shifted to the Dutchmen for good in the fifth inning. Singles from Locklear and Aspinall put runners on first and third with one out. Cameron Miller (Baylor) flew out to left field, and a diving catch allowed Locklear to score what proved to be the winning run.
Hotaling tossed a complete game for the Dutchmen, and struck out three hitters. He worked five consecutive scoreless innings after surrendering the home run. Kevin Cowan (William Patterson) took the loss for the Golden Eagles.
The Golden Eagles also scored first in the second game, plating a run in the fourth inning. Holbrook led off the inning with a single, and advanced to third on a pair of errors. Montgomery then drove in Holbrook on a fielder’s choice.
The lead was extended to 2-0 with a run in the fifth inning. Back-to-back doubles from Mark Powell (Bucknell) and JQ Folena (Cabrillo) supplied the run, and the Dutchmen turned to Hrbek to end the inning on the mound.
Albany mounted a rally in the top of the sixth inning. A single from Clement, a passed ball, and a single from Miller cut the Dutchmen deficit to 2-1. Miller was thrown out trying to stretch his single into a double for the second out. A Nick Jewett (Trinity University) single and a Brock double put runners in scoring position. Jake Hanson (Valparaiso) came up with the two-out hit, driving in both runners to give Albany a 3-2 lead.
Hrbek worked a scoreless bottom of the sixth, and Austin Foote (Indiana) came on to pitch the seventh. A hit by pitch and an error put runners on first and second, and the next two hitters were retired before Gugliemi’s heroics. The Dutchmen lead over Glens Falls for the final playoff spot remains at two games.
The Dutchmen will battle the Watertown Rams Sunday in Watertown, before returning home for a game with the Utica Brewers. Albany will host the rescheduled SEFCU Hometown Heroes Night, where fire, police, military, and EMT will be honored and receive free admission. The Dutchmen will also host Kids Eat Free Night and Baseball Movie Night on Monday.