Huskies start fast, hang on, 4-3

Gloversville scores four runs in the first inning, then holds off Scotia-Glenville, 4-3, in Foothill
Tom Garnet of Scotia-Glenville shows the ball after tagging out Chris LeFever of Gloversville on a steal attempt in the first inning.
Tom Garnet of Scotia-Glenville shows the ball after tagging out Chris LeFever of Gloversville on a steal attempt in the first inning.

If baseball was scored like boxing, Scotia-Glenville won enough innings Tuesday to get an easy decision over Gloversville.

But it was the one inning that the Huskies won that ultimately decided the superbly played battle of the second- and third-place teams in the Foothills Council at Husky Field.

John Williams’ two-run single highlighted a four-run first inning, and the Huskies hung on to defeat the Tartans, 4-3, ending Scotia’s winning streak at six games.

The Tartans suffered their third league loss of the season, falling to 8-3, while the Huskies picked up their second win in a 24-hour span, and improved their Foothills record to 7-4.

“This was kind of a carryover from last night,” said Gloversville coach Jim Robare, referring to Monday night’s 5-3, eight-inning victory over Broadalbin-Perth. “John Williams had the game-winning hit last night, and he gets two RBI today.”

“We gave them the first inning, but in my mind, we won the other six,” said Scotia coach John Striffler “It was tough to come back, but we just kept chipping away.”

Right-hander Greg Dwyer, who went the distance for Scotia (8-5 overall), struggled with his curveball in the first inning, giving the Huskies the opportunity to show that they’re a very good fastball-hitting team.

Matt Baldwin led off the bottom of the first with a sharp single up the middle, and Ryan McCloskey worked Dwyer for a walk.

Kris Barone then hit a shot deep into the hole at short, and although Scotia shortstop Jared Swider knocked the ball down, his throw to second was late, filling the bases.

Dwyer struck out Tyler Malagisi for the first out of the inning, but Williams ripped a shot through the third base-shortstop hole to drive in two runs, and Barone scored on a groundout by Joe LaPorta.

Designated hitter Chris Le­Fever followed with another sharply hit ball through short to give the Huskies (10-5 overall) a 4-0 advantage.

“Dwyer didn’t have his curveball in the first inning,” said Striffler. “But then he settled down and found the strike zone. It’s different every day, and sometimes, it takes a while to find it.”

Gloversville lefty Eric Simek breezed through the first three innings, helped by an unassisted

double play by first baseman Mal­agisi in the second, when he

doubled up Ethan Revelia after snaring a hard line drive by Dakota Aker. But Simek, who issued seven bases on balls, walked himself into

trouble in the fourth.

After getting the first two outs, Simek walked Revelia, and Aker followed with a perfectly executed hit-and-run, with Revelia going to third. A walk to Brian Cremo loaded the bases, but Simek got Zach

Bailey on a comebacker to the mound to get out of the jam.

“Eric kept them off balance,” said Robare. “That’s the thing about lefties in high school. If they can throw strikes, they can keep the other team off balance.”

The Tartans, who came into the game ranked 12th in the state in Class A, finally got on the board in the fifth inning, with another walk starting the rally. With one out, Swider walked, stole second and went to third on a groundout by Elliott Jordan. Nick Madcharo brought in Swider with a single to center, and Nick Myers, who had three of Scotia’s eight hits, followed with a single, keeping the rally going.

But Revelia then looped a ball into short right field, and McCloskey made a great diving grab, laying out flat as he reached toward center field, to get the third out.

“Their second baseman made a nice play on that short looper to center,” said Striffler. “I thought both teams played well defensively.”

The Tartans weren’t done. After Simek got the first two outs in the sixth, Dwyer drew a walk and Tom Garnet singled to left, with Dwyer hustling to third.

Robare then went to his bullpen, bringing in Chad McCloskey to replace Simek. But Swider greeted McCloskey by driving a smash just over the bag at third, bringing in both runners and cutting the Gloversville lead to 4-3.

Jordan then doubled to left, with Swider holding at third, but McClos­key got Madcharo to ground out to short, ending the rally.

Scotia threatened again in the top of the seventh, when Myers led off with a single to center, stole second and advanced to third. But with two outs, McCloskey got Cremo to ground out to second on a 3-2 fastball to end the game.

“Confidence is everything,” said Robare. “The team is starting to

realize it can play, and everything is really starting to jell.

“When your pitchers throw strikes and you play good defense, this can be a fun game.”

Dwyer pitched a great game, After giving up all four runs and three hits in the first inning, he relinquished just two hits the rest of the way, while striking out five.

“Our pitchers are doing an excellent job, and our defense is coming around,” said Striffler.

The Tartans won’t be able to dwell on the loss for long, as they travel to South Glens Falls to play the league-leading Bulldogs today, their third game in as many days.

“It’s almost insignificant what you do, league-wise, because ultimately, it doesn’t force your outcome in sectionals,” said Striffler. “You play in the league to get to the sectionals.

“We made our own breaks, both positive and negative, today, but we just came up a little short.”

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