2014 All-Star closer Kyle Zurak nails another one down for Albany in 2014.
A game-winner, a 30-2 victory, and stellar relief appearances were the highlights of the first week of March for former and future Albany Dutchmen players.
Nick Chapman, UNC-Greensboro- The 2012 Dutchmen outfielder played a key role in UNC-Greensboro’s Sunday sweep of Princeton. In the opener, Chapman came on in a pinch-hitting role in the bottom of the eighth, and fired a walk-off single into the gap to give the Spartans a 6-5 win. He then got the start in the second game of the doubleheader, and continued his hot hitting. Chapman drilled a grand slam well over the right field fence, putting the finishing touches on a 16-7 victory. He also scored two runs in the nightcap.
Joe Purritano, Dartmouth- Purritano, who played for the Dutchmen in 2013, had three multi-hit games over the weekend for Dartmouth, including three hits in the team’s first victory of the season. Over four games, Purritano hit .529 with nine hits in 17 at-bats. Over the four games, Purritano smacked two doubles, scored four runs, and drove in three. He went 4-for-5 in Dartmouth’s loss to Northwestern, and went 3-for-4 in an 8-0 triumph over Bucknell. Purritano currently leads the Big Green with a .393 batting average, 11 hits, 4 extra-base hits, 6 runs batted in, and a .433 on-base percentage.
Matt Dacey, Richmond- Dacey, a PGCBL All-League selection in 2013, hit .500 in Richmond’s three weekend games. Richmond’s lone victory was a 30-2 victory over Yale where Dacey reached base six times. The slugger bashed a home run in the victory, and added a double, a single, and three walks. He had at least two hits in all three games, and currently sits with a .341 batting average. His on-base percentage is just short of .500, courtesy of Dacey’s team-high ten walks drawn.
Kyle Zurak, Radford- Zurak, a 2014 PGCBL All-Star for the Dutchmen, made two scoreless appearances for Radford last week. Despite his Highlanders dropping both games, Zurak pitched well, allowing just two hits over three total innings of work. The right-hander has yet to allow a run in the 2015 campaign, pitching four scoreless innings and allowing opposing hitters to hit just .167 against him. He tossed two scoreless innings in the team’s 3-1 loss to College of Charleston on Saturday, keeping Radford within striking distance for an attempted comeback.
Tyler Fries, Wilmington- Fries earned the save in each of his team’s three victories last week, the opening week of the season for the Wildcats. Fries was dominant in five appearances, allowing just one hit over six innings of work. Opposing hitters are hitting under .100 against the 2014 Dutchmen hurler. In his three saves, Fries allowed just two base runners in nailing down victories. His first save shut down Southern New Hampshire, a ranked team. That save saw Fries work two innings and not allow a hit. Fries earned eight saves last season for Wilmington, who won 35 games.
Liam Conboy, Susquehanna- The incoming Albany right-hander was stellar in a relief appearance on Tuesday, working 3.1 innings en route to a save in a Susquehanna victory. Conboy allowed just one hit and struck out two hitters in Susquehanna’s 5-2 victory over Misericordia. Conboy has not allowed a run over 4.1 innings of work this season for the Crusaders. Conboy wasn’t the only Dutchmen pitcher from Susquehanna to pitch well last week, as 2014 righty Spencer Hotaling struck out eleven hitters in a complete game victory over Northwestern (Minn.)