WATERTOWN — Ryan Strollo and his Watertown Rapids teammates continue to show a bit of a flair for the dramatic.
After the Rapids squandered a two-run lead in the ninth inning, Strollo drew a bases-loaded walk to score the winning run in the bottom of the 10th as Watertown edged Geneva, 5-4, in a Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League game Friday night at the Alex T. Duffy Fairgrounds.
Watertown recorded its fourth straight victory, improving to 5-4.
“It was an absolutely crazy one,” said Dylan Broderick, who scored the winning run in the 10th. “But we played in extra innings and still got the win.”
With the game being played under Major League Baseball-like rules in which each team opened extra innings with a runner on second base, the Rapids escaped the top of the 10th unscathed.
With Nick Forney on second base, Watertown reliever Chase Doris retired Geneva in order, with a strikeout, groundout and a lineout to right field to end the threat.
“I like to pride myself on my speed, so starting out on second base was pretty big for me,” Broderick said. “So I enjoyed it and I wanted to be the guy to score that final run.”
With Watertown starting the bottom of the 10th with Broderick on second, the Rapids eventually loaded the bases when Dixon Black was intentionally walked and Dylan Perry walked.
Strollo, who just joined the Rapids last week, then walked on four pitches to plate Broderick for the winning run.
“I was just taking it as like another normal at bat,” Strollo, who attends Fairfield, said. “I wasn’t thinking any thing too crazy about it, because if you do, you might not get it done. I was ready for anything.”
“It was a sigh of relief for sure,” Broderick (University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown) said of the win. “We didn’t make the plays that needed to be played toward the end of the game, but we got it done, still.”
The game, which was played after a 48-minute rain delay and which finished in 3 hours and 33 minutes, was the first extra-inning game of the season for the Rapids.
“This was just a very strange ball game,” Rapids coach Ben Moxley said. “Just starting late, you’ve got your pitchers lined up to start at the right time. Owen (Parliament) making his first start and our catcher (Thomas McCaffery) playing his first game with us. But we pitched really well all night. We had like 15 hits and only scored five runs. ... It was a weird game, those ones are tough to win.”
Parliament, a LaFargeville native, made his Rapids’ debut, starting the game and pitching four innings in a no decision.
“I felt good,” said Parliament, who joined the Rapids on Friday. “I established my fastball early, I just didn’t establish my offspeed until about the second inning, so I pitched off my fastball, so it really helped.”
Parliament, coming off his freshman season at Division I Wofford College in North Carolina, allowed one run on three hits. He struck out three and walked only one.
“Owen was great,” Moxley said. “He hasn’t pitched much recently in the last month, so you never know how that’s going to go. But his fastball was lively and he threw it for strikes, (his) offspeed (pitches) started getting better as the outing went on. And we didn’t want to throw him too long, because he hasn’t thrown in a while.”
“It feels good to play back home and have family come out and watch you,” Parliament said. “It’s good to be back, for sure. This was good for my first game with the Rapids.”
Parliament left the game with a 2-1 lead before Geneva tied the game in the fifth inning as Jeremy Glinski drew a walk and later scored on an errant pickoff attempt.
Watertown then reclaimed the lead at 3-2 in the bottom of the inning as Broderick doubled and later scored on an error on a fielding overthrow.
The Rapids stretched their edge to 4-2 in the sixth as David Stirpe hit a leadoff double and scored on Aaron Whitley’s double over the right fielder’s head.
Geneva (8-6) rallied to tie the score in the top of the ninth as Philip Bernstein singled and scored on Branden Myers’ double to center field. Myers scored the tying run when Elliot Good reached on an infield error.
Doris earned the win in relief, pitching a scoreless 10th.
After Jon Sylvester relinquished the lead in the fifth for the Rapids, Ian Haigh pitched two scoreless innings and Peter Jones tossed a scoreless eighth before the Red Wings rallied to tie the score in the ninth.
Offensively for Watertown, Broderick and Tony Santa Maria, who batted 1-2 in the lineup, combined for seven hits and four runs. Broderick went 4-for-6 and Santa Maria went 3-for-5, including a double, with both scoring twice.
Strollo singled twice while Matt Tobin (triple) and Stirpe finished with two hits each.
=Watertown will play at the Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs at 6:35 tonight before returning to host the Utica Blue Sox in a doubleheader at 5 p.m. Sunday and Mohawk Valley at 6:30 p.m. on Monday at the Fairgrounds.
“We’ve won four in row right now, I think most the guys are swinging the bats pretty well, pitchers are throwing really well, the bullpen’s really locking down,” Broderick added. “We’re playing some good baseball.”