Amsterdam Mohawks capture sixth PGCBL championship

Santhosh Gottam is greeted by his teammates after pitching seven-plus innings of three-hit ball against the Batavia Muckdogs in Game 3 of the PGCBL finals on Wednesday in Batavia. (Photo courtesy Amsterdam Mohawks)

BATAVIA — The Amsterdam Mohawks showed off their big bats, good arms and short memories Wednesday.

The Mohawks overcame a loss in Game 2 to turn around hours later and defeat Batavia 7-2 in the Game 3 nightcap of the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League finals, giving them their sixth PGCBL title in the league’s 11-year history.

Cameron Love and Brett Coker — a second-year Mohawk — each drove in two runs for Amsterdam, which banged out 14 hits in the decisive game.

Santhosh Gottam delivered a solid pitching outing in just his second start for the Mohawks this summer. He went 7-plus innings, allowing three hits while striking out four and keeping the Muckdogs’ bats quiet just a few hours after they were so hot in an 8-1 Game 2 win.

The Mohawks concluded their winningest season ever with 43 wins, and another title to add to the ones earned in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2016 and 2019.

For as powerful as the Mohawks’ bats have been, it was a bunt single by Nick Giamarusti in the third that got things started. He eventually scored on Love’s infield single. Coker followed with a two-run single to right field.

That was enough for Gottam, who has spent most of this season coming out of the bullpen for Amsterdam, but who never wavered Wednesday night and kept the Muckdogs at bay.

Love added an RBI single in the seventh, and Amsterdam broke things open with three runs in the eighth. Josh Overbeek and Gage Miller sandwiched RBI singles around Giamarusti’s fielder’s choice RBI.

Luis Misla struck out three in relief of Gottam.

MUCKDOGS WIN GAME 2

Batavia did just what it had to do, controlling every aspect of Game 2.

The Mohawks, who won Game 1 by a score of 9-5 Tuesday, had their share of hits off starting pitcher Julian Pichardo and relievers, but couldn’t drive runners in. Amsterdam matched Batavia’s 10 hits, but stranded 11 runners.

Batavia scored three runs in the bottom of the third. Kenny Dodson had a leadoff single to right field, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt. With two outs, Kyle Corso walked, and both he and Dodson scored on a double to right-center field by former Mohawk Tyler Cannoe. Daniel Burroway followed with an RBI double of his own.

Amsterdam, which had the best regular-season record of 39-6, scored in the fourth, as Zach Gardiner hit his second home run of the finals and third of the season with a solo shot to right field.

The Muckdogs added two more in the fifth to make it 5-1. Corso drove in one with a single to left field. After reaching second, he came around to score on an infielder’s error that would have been the third out.

Mitch Fleming’s two-run home run to right field made it 7-1 in the sixth, then Levis Aguila Jr.’s RBI double scored Burroway to make it 8-1 in the eighth.

Love finished 3 for 5. Coker and Overbeek each added two hits for the Mohawks. Pitcher Carson Cotugno also suffered a thigh contusion after taking a hard-hit ball off his leg in one inning of relief.

Game 3

Amsterdam 003 000 130 — 7 14 1

Batavia 000 000 011 — 2 5 2

Game 2

Amsterdam 000 100 000 — 1 10 2

Batavia 003 022 01x — 8 10 0

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