MILLTOWN — The Salesianum-Saint Mark’s baseball rivalry lived on in an exciting Sunday afternoon as the state tournament neared. The Spartans scored three runs in the seventh inning to defat the Sals, 10-9, on May 15.
The Spartans’ Garret Quinn and Sallies’ Zach Czarnecki both allowed one runner in the first, but both pitchers ran into trouble in the second. Brandon Baffone led off the second inning for Salesianum with a single, followed by a single by Deuce Rzucidlo to put the Sals in business. Nathan McBride walked to load the bases, and Quinn Bartkowski was hit by a pitch to drive in the first run. Then Aiden Tesche walked to make it 2-0. Ryan James followed with a single that scored two runs to make it 4-0. Ryan Smith relieved Quinn and got out of the jam with no more damage.
The Spartans answered with three runs in their half of the second as Jameson Summerill knocked in a run with a single, and James Baffone knocked in two with a double. After the Sals added a run in the third, Saint Mark’s tied it up at 5 as they scored two runs. Tyler Satterfield and Kyle Reader both singled and advanced to second and third base on wild pitches. Sattersfield scored when Bartkowski, the Sals’ catcher, had to throw to first to complete the strikeout.
The Spartans grabbed their first lead on a Sattisfield sacrifice fly, but the Sals recaptured the lead with three runs in the fifth as Bartkowski singled home a pari and Czarnecki hit a sac fly.
The Sals took an 8-7 lead into the seventh and added a run as Tesche doubled and scored on a Jake Dunion sacrifice fly. Cory Sheridan, who replaced Czarcki in the fourth, looked to keep the Spartans off the board, but the first two Saint Mark’s batters reached base on a single and error. Dunion relieved Sheridan, and Andrew Wegner moved the runners to second and third on sacrifice bunt. Zach Frame scored on a wild pitch, and James Baffone was intentionally walked to put winning run on base. Michael Clarke was hit by pitch to load the bases. Sattersfield drew a walk to tie the game, and Reader walked to score Baffone and give the Spartans a wild win.
The Spartans improved to 12-4 and will travel to St. Georges Tech on Tuesday at 4:15 p.m. Sallies is 11-4 and will head to Canby Park to face St. Elizabeth on Tuesday at 4 p.m.
All photos by Nick Halliday.