The Highlanders earned a much-needed win over host Mt. Eden on April 20, romping to an 11-3 victory. Alex Tafapolsky had two hits and drove in three runs, while Nico DeFazio and Liam Campbell each had two hits and two RBI.
The Highlanders are now 9-7 on the year.
Scott McKenzie started for Piedmont and pitched four shutout innings. He struck out five, but also walked five and allowed three hits. Evan McConathy pitched 1 2/3 scoreless innings with four strikeouts. Peter Krumins finished the game with a scoreless inning.
The Highlanders took the lead immediately when Michael Aikawa led off the game with a double and Krumins singled him home. The score remained 1-0 into the fourth, when DeFazio tripled in two runs. Davis Alazraqui then brought DeFazio in on a squeeze bunt.
Aikawa singled in a run in the fifth to make it 5-0. He came around to score when he stole third and the catcher’s throw was wild.
Cole Garcia came on to pitch the bottom of the fifth for Piedmont and immediately got himself into trouble. A leadoff walk followed by an error brought home one run. Two more walks and a wild pitch scored another run. McConathy was summoned to get out of the jam, but a third run scored on a steal of home.
Campbell got two of the runs back with a two-run single in the sixth. Tafapolsky broke the game open in the seventh with a bases-loaded single that scored all three runs.
The day before, Piedmont fell at Albany in a nonleague tilt, 4-3. The Highlanders had a 3-1 lead but ended up losing in the bottom of the seventh when Peyton McGowen hit a home run. McGowan was 2-for-3 with three runs scored on the day.
Piedmont was held to just four hits, with Alazraqui getting two of them. Tobin Cantrill went 4 1/3 innings, allowing three runs on five hits with four strikeouts and three walks. Dimitri Papahadjopoulos threw 1 2/3-plus, allowing the McGowen home run and taking the loss.
Krumins had a triple in the third and scored on a DeFazio ground out to tie the game at 1-1. Ryan McConathy led off the fourth with a home run to put the Highlanders up. Shane Miller scored on an error in the fifth to make it 3-1. But Joaquin Stuart blasted a two-run home run in the bottom of the inning to tie the score.
On April 8, Piedmont fell to host St. Mary’s-Albany in a nonleague game, 4-2. A three-run second by the Panthers proved too much to overcome. DeFazio had two hits and drove in both runs for the Highlanders, but the offense struggled again, managing only four hits.
Piedmont jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the top of the first when DeFazio singled in a run. The Highlanders loaded the bases in the inning, but Markos Lagios struck out to end the frame.
Evan Kleinhaus doubled in the tying run for St. Mary’s in the second. Kazu Akyame-Tahara put the Panthers up with an RBI-single. Eligh James then tripled in Akyame-Tahara and it was 3-1.
DeFazio singled in a run in the fifth to cut it to 3-2. But St. Mary’s pitching retired eight of the last nine Piedmont hitters to close it out.