NEWARK BEARS - Despite Club Record, There's Good Things Happening In The Den.
The Bears started a three game series Friday morning against the red-hot CanAm League leading Rockland Boulders. The New York team is off to a 10-3 start this season, while the Bears are foraging around with a 4-6 record. Newark suffered through a 10-3 early day thumping in game one yesterday at the Den. They'll try and even the series this evening as the series shifts to Rockland.
Early on, Rockland and Newark sport five of the league's top six hitters, led overall by the Bears Bridger Hunt with a .500 mark after ten games. Bridger also leads the Bears with three home runs. Rockland's Chris Edmondson is tied for the circuit lead with five home runs, but owns the undisputed early lead with fourteen runs batted in.
On the hill, the Boulders' Pat Moran leads the league with twenty strikeouts, while Newark's Ryan Carr tops all pitchers with a 1.86 ERA. Team mate Bryan Banes is second with a 2.70 mark. Then Rockland posts the next three starting pitchers with the top ERA.
Entering today's game, the Boulders are winners of three in a row, while the Bears have dropped two straight. Entering the series, the Bears were fresh off taking two of three at the Den against the defending champs, Quebec Capitales.
Weekend Series Tied 1-1
I - RKL 10; NWK 3
GAME TWO FINAL
* 13 innings
Garry Templeton's group proved themselves a little more resilient than the average Bear. After Newark center fielder JJ Sherrill led off the game with his first home run of the season, the Bears fell behind 4-1 in the third inning, on the strength of two Rockland home runs off Bears starter Brian Parker, struck by Chris Edmondson and former Bear, Billy Alvino.
The Bears clawed back in the fifth with an RBI from Bridger Hunt, which knocked Rockland starting pitcher Cameron Bayne out of the box after four innings and facing three batters in the fifth. Evan Stermer entered in relief to face Carlos Guzman. Brandon Newton scored when Guzman bounced into a fielder's choice, to make it a 4-3 game.
In the top of the eighth, left fielder Jamar Walton scored the game tying run on a passed ball committed by Rockland catcher Scott Knazek. With no scoring in the ninth, into extra innings they went.
The Bears took a 5-4 lead in the top of the eleventh inning on Bridger Hunt's RBI single. However, the Boulders tied the game again off Bears reliever Sergio Espinosa on a single by Jerod Edmondson, and a triple by Chris Edmondson.
In the top of the thirteenth inning, appropriately, Bridger Hunt crossed the plate with the Bears sixth run on yet another Boulders passed ball. Newark pitcher David Dinelli then put the Boulders to bed with a scoreless effort in the bottom of the inning, to earn the win in relief.
The Bears halted Rockland's win streak, and improved their own mark to 5-5 in their last ten games. The rubber game of this three game set is scheduled for 2pm Sunday in Provident Bank Park.