NEWARK — Even though the game was played at Colburn Park, Friday night’s matchup between the Geneva Red Wings (2-2-1) and Newark Pilots (2-3) definitely qualifies as a barn burner.
In a game where both teams had their bats humming, the Pilots edged out the Red Wings for their second win of the season, 19-13.
There was at least one run scored in every inning except for the ninth, and based on Newark’s offense, they probably would have scored in the bottom of the ninth if it were played.
Starting pitchers did not last long for either team.
Geneva opened the game with a five-run first inning courtesy of a grand slam by third baseman Daniel Sperling. It would be Sperling’s only hit of the night, but four runs batted in is certainly a great way to begin a game.
The bottom of the second inning made it apparent how crazy the game would be.
The Pilots answered Sperling’s grand slam with four runs of their own in the bottom of the second off a bases-loaded walk and two singles by first baseman Adam Zebrowski and center fielder Allen Murphy.
Both Zebrowski and Murphy ended with three hits, and Murphy had five runs batted in and was a triple shy of the cycle when all was said and done.
While the Red Wings would add one more run in the top of the third inning off an RBI double by Brandon Cooper, the Pilots would add one run in the third, fourth and fifth innings off two fielder’s choices and a solo home run by Murphy to take a 7-6 lead heading into the sixth.
Geneva then scored four runs in the top of the sixth to retake the lead, 10-7.
Brandon Cooper and Ethan Scott were both hit by pitches with the bases loaded, Dylan Chiaro had an RBI single and Matteo Avallone hit a sacrifice fly to center field.
That would be the last time Geneva would have the lead.
As if the Pilots didn’t have enough offensive prowess in the game, they then exploded for six runs in both the six and seventh innings. Ty Syta, David Bermudez, Over Torres and Allen Murphy all drove in runs between the two innings.
Even though the Pilots had done all the damage they needed to do, the Red Wings did not stop chipping away. They would score two runs in the seventh and one final run in the eighth.
Right fielder Kross Grundy ended up going 2-4 with two runs scored and two RBIs and Brandon Cooper had the same stat line with two runs and two RBIs.
In the end, pitching was problematic for both teams but more so for Geneva. The longest a pitcher lasted for the Red Wings was Tim Geissel, who lasted 2 1/3 innings, giving up one hit, one earned run while walking two batters and striking out two.
Newark’s longest pitching outing was Dan Munn. He went 4 2/3 innings with six hits, four earned runs and two walks.
Overall, the game proved to be a hitter’s dream, and a pitcher’s nightmare.