Ducks and Patriots split series 2-2
I - LID 7; SOM 6
II - SOM 1; LID 0
III - SOM 3; LID 0
IV - LID 3; SOM 0
1) Somerset 23-11
2) Long Island 19-15
Long Island Ducks: Flock enters the second leg trailing the Somerset Patriots by 4 games. After Saturday's performance, Andrew Barbosa appears poised to help close the gap,
Starter Andrew Barbosa delivered a message Saturday, which Somerset heard loud and clear. His Game Four performance boldly proclaimed - Careful how you proceed forward, the Ducks can pitch too!
Andrew Barbosa's signing allowed Eric Niesen, whom struggled as a starter, to return to his customary reliever role.
Making his third appearance as a Duck, Barbosa out-dueled Somerset starter Matt Zielinski for 7 innings. He allowed no runs on just 4 hits, walked 2 and fanned 10 Patriots batters. He exited on the winning side of a 3-0 game.
His opponent threw 7 innings as well, but allowed 3 earned runs on 9 hits. He walked none and fanned 4 batters before exiting on the losing side.
Jon Griffin put the Ducks ahead with a 2-run home run in the top of the 4th, and Mike Blanke's base hit in the top of the 7th scored Reegie Corona to give the Ducks their 3-0 margin of victory.
Ryan Kussmaul earned his league leading 9th save.
The Ducks are now 19-15 for the season, and with a series split in Somerset they've gotten back within 4 games of the 1st place Patriots again.
While starter Mark Rogers continues trying to straighten himself out, Andrew Barbosa joins John Brownell, Mickey Jannis, and Ian Marshall to form an effective quartet as the Ducks try and chase down Somerset in the second leg of their race for a first half flag.
These teams will meet again over the 4th of July weekend. The series also closes out the first half, and might even decide who captures the first half flag.
The Ducks second leg starts Sunday against the visiting York Revolution. The Patriots head to Bridgeport for an encounter with the Bluefish.