MENDON – The Geneseo Thunder topped the HFL Cougars 10-7 in extra innings Thursday, securing the No. 1 seed in the upcoming double-elimination playoff tournament for the Thunder.
Geneseo (13-3) built a 5-1 lead behind Alex Yarton and Tim Layland’s pitching performances heading into the bottom of the seventh, but HFL (4-8-2) rallied for four runs in their final at-bat to send the game to extras.
However, the Thunder wasted no time getting the lead back in the eighth.
Jake Duppengieser and Korey Gillen each collected RBI, and Geneseo took advantage of an error and three walks to score three more times in the inning. HFL again tried to rally in the home half of the eighth, but after pulling within three at 10-7, Duppengieser locked up the win for Geneseo.
Yarton pitched the first four innings, allowing no runs and striking out three, and went 3 for 5 with 2 RBI at the plate. Layland pitched the fifth and sixth innings, and Duppengieser finished the game on the hill.
Offensively, Duppengieser went 2 for 3 with an RBI and a run scored, Zack Kolodziejski went 2 for 4 with 3 runs scored and Sean Mattle and Patrick Dishaw each added an RBI.
Coach Mark Bennett said his team is ready to make some noise in the playoffs.
“I feel positive and excited because these guys are pumped,” he said. “The guys who have been around the last two years, our seasons have ended with disappointment, and we don’t want that to happen. The new guys have all felt that, and they’re all onboard. I feel very confident that with the scrimmages and practices, we’ll be good.”
The Thunder now have a 10-day layoff before their first playoff game on July 21. The opponent and time are still TBD, but Geneseo will have home-field advantage throughout the tournament.