The sophomore southpaw tossed a complete-game, three-hit shutout as the Eagles defeated Collegiate, 7-0, in Ivy Prep League baseball on Randall's Island on Friday.
Kassan struck out 10 and was five outs away from a perfect game before Jake Singer slapped a single to centerfield with one out in the top of the sixth.
“I wasn’t really thinking about the perfect game that much,” Kassan said. “But it was there. [After the first hit] I smiled, I just looked to the bench and had a smile on my face.”
Max Kassan led Fieldston to a 7-0 shutout of Collegiate on Friday.
Kassan had to protect a 3-0 lead for most of the game until Fieldston broke the game open in the top of the seventh, scoring four times. The frame started with Jake Turtel reaching on an error. After Matt Stadler moved him over, Will Savage drove him in with a double to left. Matt Nunez then reached on an error before Matt Guzman drove them both in with a double to left.
“We always get the lead and let it go,” said Guzman, who had three RBIs and scored twice. “We have to finish teams off and today was a perfect example of finishing things off. Max has been a surprise; he’s really coming through.”
The seventh was big for Fieldston (9-1, 7-1), because the Eagles failed to take full advantage of a key opportunity in the fourth. The Eagles were clinging to a 1-0 lead with the bases loaded with one out and were only able to scratch across two runs on a walk by Sam Jacobson and a fielder's choice by Turtel.
“We’ve been trying to get back on track, especially offensively,” Fieldston coach Tony Marro said. “We had that one nice inning in the seventh and it was nice to see guys come through with runners in scoring position.”
While the offense was able to pull through, Marro realizes the success for Fieldston came mostly due to Kassan’s performance on the mound on Friday.
“That’s Max,” he said. “He’s a young guy and he battles and never gets frustrated. He’s a great young pitcher. Everyone knew [about the no-hitter] and it’s like anything else in the dugout, you just keep it hush-hush and no one likes to say anything. It was a really fun atmosphere.”
While pitching was strong for Fieldston, Collegiate (3-5, 3-4) had some trouble on the mound. Chris Giglio gave up three runs in four innings. Giglio only gave up two hits, but he walked two and hit two batters. Singer took over in the fifth and was responsible for the seventh-inning surge by Fieldston.
Kassan got into trouble in the bottom of the seventh when Collegiate had runners on second and third with no out. Kassan was able to strike out the side to close it out.
“I felt good the whole day,” Kassan said. “I just tried to throw it in there.”
Fieldston can only hope the good feeling continues.
Max Kassan, Fieldston, the Eagles, the Eagles, perfect game, Jake Singer, Matt Stadler, Collegiate, Kassan, Fieldston, Collegiate, Ivy Prep League baseball, Matt Nunez, Jake Turtel