(LITTLE FALLS, NJ) – Marcus Nidiffer’s two-out single in the top of the ninth broke up a no-hit bid by the New Jersey Jackals, but it wasn’t enough to start a rally as the Rockland Boulders fell 4-0 at Yogi Berra Stadium on Sunday afternoon. With the loss Rockland (14-9) and New Jersey (16-8) split the four-game series in their first meeting of the season.
The league’s top offense plated a pair of runs in the bottom of the second off Rockland’s Richard Salazar to get the scoring started. After Cory Vaughn doubled to lead off the inning, he came home on a two-out single from D’Vontrey Richardson, who later scored on a throwing error from Nidiffer. New Jersey added another run in the fourth on a sacrifice fly from Richard Stock before Eddie Newton’s RBI double in the eighth tacked on another insurance run.
While the offense helped out the Jackals pitching, it was the hurlers who made the biggest impact. Starting pitcher Whit Mayberry got it started by retiring the first six batters he faced before issuing a walk to Mike Montville in the third. He then got the following three batters out in order to avoid any trouble. Mayberry would end the day with five no-hit innings, allowing only two base runners.
Robert Stock continued the bid at history, hitting one batter and walking another in three innings of relief. Closer Fernando Cruz then came on in the ninth and promptly retired Junior Arrojo and Mike Fransoso. However, it would be a first-pitch single from Nidiffer that ended a possible no-hitter. Jared Schlehuber would ground out in the following at-bat, ending the game, and giving Rockland their third shutout loss of the year.
Mayberry (1-0) picked up his first win of the season while Salazar (3-2) took the loss giving up three runs, two earned, in his six innings of work. Three different Jackals drove in runs while Vaughn went 2-for-3, as the only player with a multi-hit game.
The Boulders will enjoy an off day on Monday before returning to Palisades Credit Union Park on Tuesday, June 14th for a doubleheader with the Sussex County Miners. Game one is scheduled to begin at 4:30pm with gates opening at 4:00pm for what will be a continuation of a suspended game from May 21st. The game will be a 7-inning affair with another 7-inning contest beginning approximately thirty minutes after the end of Game One.
Fans can still purchase tickets by visiting the Palisades Credit Union Park box office, calling (845) 364-0009 or by sliding to www.RocklandBoulders.com.