Niagara Nationals open strong at Cooperstown Tournament

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 19 August 2015 at 12:00 am

Compiling a 5-1 record in round robin play, the Niagara Nationals have advanced to the elimination round of the Cooperstown Tournament.

Currently ranked 16th out of 104 teams, the Nationals opened the round robin competition with a 13-0 romp over North Valley, New Jersey.

Trevor Luthart and Mitchell Holtz combined to hurl a no hitter. Luthart struck out 3 in 2 innings and Holtz 5 in two innings of the mercy rule contest.

A solo home run by Liam Ward in the first inning and a two-run homer by Nate Sherman in the fourth inning highlighted the victory.

Ward, Sherman, Brian Fry, Chris Goyette and Sam Murphy each had two hits.

The Nationals next posted a 14-2 mercy rule win over Phoenixville, Pa. as Ward hit a two-run homer in the first inning and Sherman a three-run shot in the fourth.

Ward, Sherman and Murphy each had a total of 3 hits.

Goyette pitched 2 innings allowing 2 hits and striking out 4. O’Neill gave up 2 hits and struck out 2 in 2 innings.

The third round saw the Nationals drop a 10-7 decision to the Carolina Titans.

Fry had a pair of solo home runs in the first and third innings, Ward a solo shot in the first and Murphy a two-run homer in the sixth.

Fry had a total of 3 hits and Murphy 2.

Rebounding, the Nationals next defeated Great Neck, Va. 13-0 as Goyette, Matt Lyskawa, Ward and Murphy combined for the shutout.

At the plate, Murphy had a two-run homer as Luthart, Joe Dell’oso and O’Neill each added solo shots.

Luthart and Fry both had 3 hits and O’Neill 2 as every player in the lineup had at least 1 RBI.

The Nationals next blitzed the Granite State Bobcats from New Hampshire 26-5 as Ward belted 4 home runs and Fry, Lyskawa and Luthart each had a pair of homers.

Ward had a total of 5 hits, Luthart and Dell’oso 4, Hunter Briggs and Lyskawa 3 and Fry and Holtz 2.

The Nationals capped off the round robin competition with a 15-3 victory over the Prior Lake Lakers from Minnesota.

Ward had 2 home runs and Goyette 1 to highlight the offense.

Sherman had a total of 3 hits as Ward, Murphy, Luthart and Holtz each had 2.