CANTON — Bad weather has kept the Clinton Community College men's baseball team inside for most of the preseason.Monday afternoon, however, the Cougars got a chance to play on a diamond.The Cougars split a twinbill with SUNY Canton, losing the first game, 4-3, and winning the second, 6-3.In the first contest, the Cougars and Kangaroos were knotted at 1-all, before Clinton took a 2-1 lead in the top of the sixth inning.Starting and losing pitcher Kris Chase opened the bottom half of the inning with back-to-back walks to put runners on first and second and the Kangaroos went on to tie the game at 2-all.Then, with one out, the Cougars weren't able to execute a double play on a grounder in the infield, giving the Kangaroos another chance to take the lead. The next batter followed with a rocket on the ground, right at the first-baseman. The ball, however, took a crazy hop and skimmed up the first baseman's body and into the outfield, scoring both runners.Clinton was able to get one back in the top of the seventh, but couldn't knot the score."We played well in the first game today," Clinton head coach Tom Neale said. "We threw the ball well for the most part, but we have to cut down on our walks."The weather was also a factor and played a role in the bad bounce the Cougars encountered in the sixth."It was cold and rainy today and that might have affected that ground ball, but that's baseball and those things happen," Neale said.Matt Daunais was the lone Cougar with multiple hits.In the second game, the Cougars were able to get the early-season monkey off their back and pick up a win.After a slow start offensively, the Cougars put together a decisive fourth-inning rally.William Latour and Dan Elder rapped back-to-back RBI singles to give the Cougars their first lead of the day. Latour's single drove in two runs and gave him three RBI for the day. Chris White followed with an RBI double to put the Cougars up 5-2.The Kangaroos got a run in the bottom of the fifth, but a seventh-inning run for the Cougars was enough insurance to come away with the victory.Andrew Stanley picked up the victory for the Cougars (1-1). Latour and Bryan Brothers each had two hits for Clinton."We hit the ball well considering it was the first time we have been outside this year," Neale said."It was a good tune-up for us because we will be seeing better pitching the rest of the year. We battled all the way through — pitchers, catchers, fielders and hitters. I'm happy with the effort."The Cougars will be back in action on Wednesday at 2 p.m. at Schenectady Community College.—SUNY Canton 4, Clinton C.C. 3Clinton100 001 1 — 3 7 1Canton100 003 x — 4 3 1Chase and LaVarnway. Worth, Pelloth (6) and DeMass. WP- Pelloth. LP- Chase. 2B- Chase (CC), Latour (CC).Clinton C. C 6, SUNY Canton 3Clinton010 400 1 — 6 9 3Canton020 010 0 — 3 1 1Stanley and LaVarnway, Chase (3). McFadden, Wozniak (4) and DeMass. WP- Stanley. LP- McFadden. 2B- Rutland (Can), White (CC).
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