Warwick, R.I. – April 18, 2016: The CCRI Knights baseball team played rival UConn Avery-Point (UCAP) back to back days on Wednesday and Thursday at home this past week. CCRI and UCAP split the two game series with both games decided by one run. CCRI won the first game 5-4, while UCAP took the Thursday game 7-6. The games give the Knights a 5-6 record on the season with a 1-1 Region XXI record.
The Knights sent freshman Shane Kittila (Warwick, RI) to the mound on for game one. Kittila pitched well for the Knights in the early going as he cruised through the first two innings before hitting a rough patch in the third and fourth, as he was eventually chased by UCAP after four. The pointers scored one in the third and three in the fourth to take a 4-0 lead over the Knights.
The Knights stayed patient though and broke through for some big runs. In the bottom of the fifth, the Knights first three batters all walked to load the bases. Omaury Cortorreal (Providence, RI) then singled to drive in two runs. Co-Captain Brandon Escalante (Pembroke, FL) then knocked in a run on a RBI groundout to bring the Knights within one run, 4-3.
In the sixth, the Knights were able to take the lead on a two out rally. Edison Mercado (Providence, RI) was able to single to right, which advanced Cortorreal to second after being hit by a pitch. Robert Paulino (Mirimar, FL) then struck a single to right which knocked in Cortorreal to tie the game at four. Escalante was then able to double to deep left to bring in Mercado for the lead, which would prove to be the eventual game winner.
The Knights bullpen entered lockdown mode after that as Elijah Dressel (Warwick, RI) and Randy Garcia (Providence, RI) shut down the pointers for the final five innings of the game. Garcia struck out four while Dressel struck out two, while they both didn’t allow a walk and only two hits. Knights took game one 5-4.
Escalante finished with two hits and two RBI’s in the game for the Knights. Cortoreal was able to finish with a hit, run scored and two RBI’s and Paulino finished with two hits and an RBI.
UCAP jumped out to an early 2-0 on the Knights after scoring a run a piece in the first and second. The Knights then responded loudly with a three-run bottom of the second. In the inning the first four Knights all recorded a hit. Enzo Clemente (Plantation, FL) hit an infield single to start it, Dylan Brooks (Lookeba, OK) followed with a single to right, Omaury Cortorreal then singled to right to score Clemente. Edison Mercado brought in Brooks on a double and then Edwin Pichardo (Hollywood, FL) brought in Cortorreal on an RBI groundout that gave the Knights a 3-2 lead.
The Knights built up their lead in the fourth which was started off by Dylan Brooks hitting a long home run over the wall in center field. After loading the bases, the Knights got another run on an RBI groundout from Escalante to push the lead to 5-2.
In the fifth, both teams scored a run to put the score at 6-3. UCAP did not go away this game though as they rallied by scoring two in the seventh and two more in the eighth to take a 7-6 lead. The Knights could not get anything going after that and failed to overcome the one run deficit, dropping the second game 7-6.
Brooks finished the game going 3-4 with a HR, RBI and two runs scored. Cortorreal went 2-4 from the plate with two runs scored and an RBI while Enzo Clemente also went 2-4 with two runs scored.
The Community College of Rhode Island, New England’s largest comprehensive community college, enrolls nearly 18,000 students in credit courses and thousands more in non-credit and job training classes. Its athletic program boasts 12 varsity programs and an academic support program for all student-athletes.