Saturday, June 6, 2009

Maple Hill-Fort Plain wrapup; Monday's results

Members of the Maple Hill baseball team celebrate (a second time, for real) their big 10-8 victory over Fort Plain Saturday afternoon at Geyser Road Park in Saratoga Springs. The Wildcats scored three runs in the top of the seventh inning and saw senior ace Jaime Schultz strike out the side in the bottom half of the inning (a ball four call was mistaken for a strike three call - the umpire pointed to first to indicate a base on balls, it was a close pitch) to clinch a win in the Section II Class CC-C playoff game, sending Maple Hill to the New York State regional round for the first time in school history. (all photos by Ed Burke, for The Record).

Maple Hill second baseman-pinch hitter Patrick Curtain slides in safe at first base in the seventh inning of Saturday's game. He reached on a bunt single and scored the eventual game-winning run on Nick Papas' ground ball to shortstop later in the inning.

Maple Hill starting pitcher Mike Doughtie connects on an RBI single in the fourth inning of Saturday's game. He was tagged for all eight Fort Plain runs, but drove in a pair himself and let Jaime Schultz do the work in the late innings.

Maple Hill's Shane McInerney scores on Doughtie's aforementioned hit behind Fort Plain catcher Bo Baker. McInerney later became the hero, driving in Adrian Donnelly for the game-tying run with a full count and two out in the top of the final inning.

It was a great day for baseball on Satruday afternoon and surely one of the most memorable games of the season.
The Wildcats saw the lead change hands five times and received a truly gritty performance from Schultz down the stretch - he got eight of the nine outs he needed via the strikeout.

Fort Plain's decision to walk Schultz after McInerney's hit also came back to bite them, as Papas grounded the shortstop on the next ball and the ball skirted past the Fort Plain shortstop and into the outfield, allowing the winning runs to score.

The Wildcats almost had a risky decision come back to bite them, too, as they put Schultz in trailing by a run and needing the rally the bail them out.

With so many story lines to choose from, I'll have to call that game of the year, for now.
Sound off in the comments and give me a list of your superlatives this season. I'll work on a big season-ending post in the coming weeks including things that won't make our All-Area team.
Best game, best comeback, best place to watch a game - categories like that.

In Monday's regional semifinal action:

The dream ended for the Lansingburgh softball team Monday afternoon in Potsdam, as the Knights fell 3-0 to Malone-Franklin Academy.

Mechanicville, however, defeated AuSable Valley 13-0 and marches on to the regional final against Canton on Wednesday at SUNY-Potsdam.

Columbia plays Liverpool Tuesday in Syracuse at 5 p.m.

Hoosick Falls will play St. Lawrence at the Adirondack Sports Dome in Queensbury on Wednesday at 4 p.m.

In baseball:

Columbia baseball beat Cicero-North Syracuse 9-1 and advances to the New York State Final Four this weekend at NYSEG Stadium in Binghamton.

Class A champ Mohonasen plays Mexico in Syracuse Tuesday night.

Spa Catholic beat Potsdam 9-3 and will play Beekmantown on Tuesday at Queensbury High School at 4 p.m.

Maple Hill plays Ticonderoga Tuesday at Plattsburgh State at 4 p.m.

Schenectady Christian beat Indian Lake-Long lake 5-2 and will play Clifton Fine at Bleecker Stadium Tuesday at 4 p.m.

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