Saturday, June 12, 2010

Hoosick Falls and Mechanicville fall in NYS Final Four

Hoosick Falls junior first baseman Katie Kovage reacts after making the final out in the New York State Public High School Athletic Association Class C championship game against Rhinebeck. Rhinebeck's Becky Ferry (right) and Meredith Mimoso (left) embrace behind home plate. (All photos by Will Montgomery - The Record). To see full-size versions of these pictures, click on the image.

Hoosick Falls head coach Charlie Weeden had preached making contact all season long and it certainly paid off for the Panthers in a Class C semifinal victory over Gananda. Hoosick Falls forced three Gananda errors, scoring two unearned runs in a 3-2 victory.

In the championship game against Rhinebeck, Hoosick Falls had the bases loaded with one out in the bottom of the seventh. A hit, an error...anything, really...would have scored the state title-winning run, but Rhinebeck's Megan Mitchie struck out two hitters in a row to end the threat.

Rhinebeck scored two runs in the top of the eighth and Mitchie closed out a 3-1, eight inning victory at Waterloo High School for Rhinebeck's second straight NYS Class C title.

Hoosick Falls sophomore pitcher Rachel Quackenbush throws a pitch in the state championship game against Rhinebeck. She struck out 28 batters in two games Saturday in Waterloo.

Rachel Quackenbush did everything she could to keep her team in the game in the final, including strike out four batters in the eighth inning.

Olivia Rogine, however, reached on a dropped third strike and scored on Katie Braggins' RBI single. A pair of passed balls allowed the second run to score, making a potential Hoosick Falls comeback that much harder.

In the bottom of the eighth, Samantha Skott reached first on a two-out single, but the Panthers could not move her around.

Hoosick Falls first baseman Katie Kovage takes a cut against Rhinebeck's Megan Mitchie during Saturday's New York State Class C championship game.

Still, it was a remarkable season for Hoosick Falls, which finished 24-3. The Panthers suffered through some early season struggles, but really came together through team dinners and sleepovers.

"They were a little....picky...early in the year, but they came together as a team," Weeden said. "We had some pressure to start the year, but at the end, we got along. Winning helps that. I think we win as a team and we lose as a team."

Senior shortstop Jenna Priore will play at Nichols College next season. A four-year starter at shortstop, she will be missed in Hoosick Falls in 2011.

“She didn't have a great day hitting today, but up until now, from sectionals on, she had a great tournament,” Weeden said. “Regionals and everything. That's the one spot we'll have a hard time filling. She's been at shortstop for four years.”

Hoosick Falls head coach Charlie Weeden and assistant Ralph Quackenbush accept certificates after the Panthers defeated Gananda 3-2 in a New York State Class C semifinal Saturday morning in Waterloo.

Hoosick Falls defeated Gananda in its first game, 3-2. Rachel Quackenbush struck out 11 and the Panthers took advantage of three Gananda errors to score unearned runs in the third and fourth innings to build an early lead. Quackenbush worked out of a jam in the sixth to earn the win. A box score is below.

Here is the championship game box:

Mechanicville players high-five the Chenango Valley after losing a Class B semifinal game, 7-5.

Mechanicville High School leadoff hitter Alysa Russell sent a 3-1 pitch from Chenango Valley's Taylor Hendrickson flying over the right center field fence in the first inning of Saturday's New York State Public High School Athletic Association Class B semifinal.

The first four Red Raiders to the plate in the first inning all collected hits and later came around to score, chasing Hendrickson from the game before she recorded a single out.

It looked like just another fantastic start for Mechanicville.

“The game wasn't over and I told the girls that it wasn't over after the first inning,” said Mechanicville head coach Don Arceneaux.

Mechanicville sophomore third baseman Alysa Russell meets the press after Saturday's Class B semifinal. She hit a home run to spark the Red Raiders' offense in the bottom of the first inning.

Chenango Valley 's Mikala King hit a pair of home runs and Meaghan Lewis added a three-run blast as the Section IV champions fought back from a five-run deficit. Hendrickson reentered the game as the pitcher in the third inning, and she allowed just one hit and struck out seven over the final five innings, lifting Chenango Valley to a 7-5 victory at Waterloo High School.

“They're a good team,” Arceneaux said of Chenango Valley. “I'm always worried at this time of the year. You never know what's going to happen at this level. It didn't end the way we wanted it to, but what are you going to do? They battled for it. They deserved it.”

Note:You can click on the box scores to view full-size images.

For the full story on both of these games, be sure to check out Sunday's edition of The Record.

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