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SteepleCats Fall In Final Game Of 2018 Season

By John WoodNorth Adams SteepleCats
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MONTPELIER, VT. —While it certainly wasn’t the way they looked to go out, the SteepleCats offense displayed what way they struggled with all season on Wednesday night; runners left on base.

In their final game of the 2018 season, the SteepleCats headed up to Montpelier, VT on Wednesday to take on the Vermont Mountaineers in a Northern Division matchup. Behind masterful pitching, the Mountaineers were able to blank the SteepleCats after a two-run home run helped secure a 5-0 win for Vermont.

Following last night’s 12-9 win, the SteepleCats offense struggled to find its way against Vermont’s starting pitcher Andrew Kneussle. Surrendering just two hits through 6.2 innings, Kneussle pitched a gem against the SteepleCats where runners never reached beyond first base.

However, SteepleCats starting pitcher Jeff Hayner was put to work early in Wednesday’s contest. The Niagara University rising sophomore battled his way through the first two innings with the Mountaineers leaving five runners on base.

Yet the Mountaineers broke the scoring seal in the bottom of the 3rd with two runs coming across the plate. The first of which came off a Ronald Medina RBI single and the second coming in off an RBI single from Chase Achuff.

This scoring for Vermont continued in the 4th against relief pitcher Sam Dobbins. Bryce Kelley found his way home for the Mountaineers in as an RBI double by Liam McGill put the home team up 3-0.

After Dobbins held Vermont scoreless in the 5th inning, two-way player and All-Star Jackson Coutts made his way to the mound for the 6th and 7th. Coutts worked his way through both innings unscathed, showing how he’s much more than just a powerful bat.

But when All-Star outfielder Jeffery Brown came on to relieve Coutts in the bottom of the 8th, the Mountaineers saw a chance to add to their lead. This happened two at-bats into the inning when Bryce Kelley sent a ball over the wall for a two-run home run, padding the lead to five runs.

However, the SteepleCats did not go down easy, loading the bases in the top of the 9th against relief pitcher Mark Connor. Yet this last-ditch effort was cut short when a grounder to the first baseman led to the out at first.

The SteepleCats finish the 2018 NECBL season with a record of 15-28 after pitching struggles plagued the squad throughout the summer. Yet the offense of North Adams amid this remained to be one of the top forces in the league, powered by the big bats of Jackson Coutts, Jeffery Brown, Matt Koperniak, Dillon Mendel, Greg Cavaliere, Joe Porricelli, James Ciliento, Cris Ruiz and others, helping the team stay in contention in almost every contest.

The SteepleCats Organization would like to thank everyone who supported the team this season, as without our many sponsors, fans, host families, volunteers, friends, and family the team would not be the same. The organization would also like to thank our players and coaches for spending their summer in North Adams and bringing some great baseball to the Northern Berkshires. And with that said, we look forward to seeing you next summer at Joe Wolfe Field.




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