Cortland debuts with 15-12 win at Salisbury, MD. RDragon bats in fine form with 15 hits including 5x6 showing by veteran S. Figueroa; Cortland pitching not so much past returning starter J. Cook (4inn, 3h, 1er, 1bb, 3k). Five arms follow with newbie P. Boice getting the final three outs following pair of Sea Gulls HRs in the ninth off predecessor. Dragons take 5-1 lead into the sixth where Salisbury ties. Corts answer with seven-run seventh including Figueroa two-run single. P. Dondero, M. Mihalski, addition J. Warner two hits each. Dondero and Warner HRs. Dragons with one error, hosts a handful and 13 hits led by 1B j. Perry 3x3, 7 rbi, 2 HR, bb. Salisbury 2-2 heading into Sunday's rematch.
Sea Gulls enters campaign 24th in D3 preseason poll where RDragons are No. 1 -- whatever that means at this point.
Cortland cupboard far from bare. Pitching staff gets big boost with return of A. Weingarten who at 9-1 led Corts to WS crown in '15 although ineffective in today's relief stint. Didn't play in '16. Capt. J. Cook (8-1, 2.96 era) returns along with soph K. Curry (4-0), J. Winters, J. Martin, P. Healey. Catching corps in good hands with jr capt. J. Teague (.339, 43 games), jr capt. M. Personius (.304, 36g) and D1 Canisius transfer J. Massa.
Infield features S. Figueroa (.349, 50g), M. Michalski who returns from injury, jr P. Schetter, sr capt. S. Getman (.306, 25g), and D. Schweitzer. Two imports who played in the southern tier and then at South Carolina's Erskine College are soph B. Kozak (Hancock) and sr T. Phillips (Sidney).
Oufield fixture is sr N. Hart (.350, 50g) who wasn't in opening lineup, jr of/inf R. Nuzzi (37g), soph of/inf P. Dondero (.313, 42g) and jr. newcomer J. Warner.
Key losses were 1-2 hitters F. Ricci and A. Clock, the clutch C. Ziemendorf and two-time pitching all-star S. Lamando and ace closer T. Parry.
As previously stated Cortland will not make its normal Florida swing, but instead play stiff outings at mid-Atlantic foes before the conference liftoff at New Paltz