Ichabod Crane tops Averill Park in Class A title game
TROY -- Jack Brady came back to the Collar City Wednesday night and did something he had never done before as a high school baseball coach.
He watched his team win a Section II championship.
In his second year at the helm at Ichabod Crane after spending many years before that at Troy High School, Brady saw his starting pitcher, Josh Ingham, pump the Averill Park lineup with strikes in the Class A title game at Joe Bruno Stadium.
The Central Connecticut State University-bound Ingham allowed two unearned runs on six hits, striking out eight and throwing first-pitch strikes to 18 of the 29 batters he faced in a 6-2 victory.
"He threw an awful lot of first-pitch strikes and we were in the hole right off the bat every at-bat," said Averill Park head coach Mike Conroy.
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Averill Park had its ace on the mound in Nick Cioffi, but the Warriors quickly, and unusually, found themselves behind in the ballgame.
Ichabod Crane's first three batters all came around to score in the first inning and the Riders added two more in the second to post an early 5-0 advantage.
"All of a sudden, you get down 3-0 and the nerves kick in a little bit with everyone else," Conroy said. "That doesn’t usually happen with Nick on the mound."
Averill Park pitcher Nick Cioffi responded well after allowing back-to-back RBI singles by Derick Horn and Alex Mastrianni in the second inning. He held the Riders to one run on three hits the rest of the way, finishing the game with 10 strikeouts.
Sophomore Dylan Sprague drove in a run with a two-out single in the fifth inning. Greg Hotaling had scored earlier in the inning on a fielding error.
Sprague’s older brother Josh Sprague, was the only senior in the starting lineup for the Warriors, which has Conroy and his youthful team already hungry for 2011.
"We had one senior in the lineup tonight and there were some great characters and some great influences on the younger guys, but we’re very young," said Conroy. "We will be back."
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