Josh Ingham put a
double-whammy on Mohonasen’s Section II title hopes Saturday night.
The Ichabod Crane sophomore homered, tripled and drove in five runs, and on the mound hurled
no-hit ball over the final four innings in a 9-2 Class A title-game triumph at Joseph L. Bruno Stadium.
Mohonasen had won nine straight games to get a crack at its first sectional banner since 1982, only to be denied by the underclassmen-dominated Riders (No. 1 seed, 20-7), and Ingham most of all.
“It was hard for us to get here,” said Mohonasen coach Jim Huggins, after a 6-4-3 double play ended the contest. “We got through a lot of hard competition. Up until tonight, we found ways to win.”
Yet they couldn’t figure out the right-handed Ingham on a consistent basis, managing just four hits, including an RBI double and an RBI single by senior center fielder Alex Massaroni.
A leadoff walk to Pat Herrington and a one-out single by Robert
Tedesco set up Massaroni’s two-out, run-scoring single in the third inning which cut Mohonasen’s deficit to 3-2. After Scott Lindsey popped out to strand a pair, Ingham allowed only two more baserunners, both on walks.
“I just tried to stay focused, and I had the guys behind me,” said Ingham. “They had my back in the field and when we batted.”
Ichabod Crane responded with three runs in the fifth and three more in the sixth to secure its second straight Class A crown and third since 2004.
“We hit the ball hard,” said Huggins. “One of the scary things as a coach is when you do that and hit it at people. We couldn’t get the ball rolling, and they were finding holes after his big one.”
Huggins was referring to Ingham’s two-run, second-inning homer off Tedesco which gave the Riders a 2-1 edge. When Trevor Zolner and Evan Brennan doubled and singled and pulled off a double steal later in the inning, the Riders went up by two.
“When he hit the home run, things shifted,” Huggins said. “We couldn’t get things shifted back our way.”
Ingham legged out a three-run triple in the fifth, and Joe Mahar’s RBI single highlight Ichabod Crane’s sixth in which the Mighty Warrior committed two of their three errors.
“I thought the triple was big for us,” said Ingham, who went 3-for-4
with the stick, struck out six and walked three. “We had three guys on and one out, and I told myself to get the ball in the outfield. I took a hack and found a hole.”
“You can’t knock what Ichabod Crane did today,” Huggins said. “They’re a hell of a team. They played a hell of a game.”
And Mohonasen (15-6) had one heck of a season, winning the Suburban Council White Division title and earning the No. 2 sectional seed before beating Glens Falls in the quarterfinals, 11-0, and Scotia-Glenville in a wild back-and-forth semifinal, 10-8. Those victories ended years of sectional frustration for the Mighty Warriors.
“We wanted to be playing on this day. We dreamed of this day,” said Massaroni. “We fought the whole way, and although we didn’t get it, we have a lot to be proud of.”
The game could not have started any better for Mohonasen. Tedesco struck out the side in the top of the first, and the Mighty Warriors picked up a run in the bottom half when C.J. Fonda hit a one-out triple to deep left field and Massaroni doubled him home after Ben Gatchell was struck by a pitch.
Tedesco ran into trouble in the top of the second when the standout righty walked Derick Horn and Ingham launched a 325-foot drive down the left field line, giving Ichabod Crane the lead it would not relinquish.
Tedesco gave up nine hits, fanned eight and walked four in his five innings, and lost for only the second time this year against six wins. Tedesco earned the win against Glens Falls and got his second save of the season to close out Scotia-Glenville.
“He didn’t have command of his second pitch [his slider], and that made things difficult,” said Huggins. “He was up in the zone and Ichabod Crane made him pay for it. He’s a quality pitcher, though, and if I had to do it again, he’d be starting for us.”
A state final four team in 2007, Ichabod Crane will play Section III’s Whitesboro in a regional semifinal game Monday at 4 Shuttleworth Park. Should the Riders prevail, they’ll host Section X champ Franklin Academy Tuesday at 4 at Shuttleworth Park.
“I’ve got to give all the props to our coach [Paul Thompson],” said Ingham, one of 12 underclassmen on Ichabod Crane’s 16-player roster. “He taught me and all the guys about the game. He made us batter players. He’s a big reason why we did this.”
Ichabod Crane 030 033 0 — 9 9 1
Mohonasen 101 000 0 — 2 4 3
Ingham and Issler; Tedesco,Hondro (6) and Herrington.
CLASS CC-C PLAYOFF
Adam Cutspec ground it out in 90-plus degree heat, pitching six effective innings, legging out three extra base hits and scoring three times in Fort Plain’s 8-1 triumph over Corinth.
“I love warm weather, but not this warm,” said the all-state senior, after helping keep the Hilltoppers’ (24-3) hopes alive for a second consecutive state title. “I’m tired, but it feels good. Definitely feels good.”
Fort Plain’s leadoff batter kick-started a three-run third with a double, began a three-run fifth with a triple and belted another double to fuel a two-run sixth. On the hill, the right-handed Cutspec scattered five hits, struck out eight, picked off a runner and walked three before Dustin Baker finished up with a perfect seventh.
“The difference in the game was not his hitting. It was his pitches,” Corinth coach Tom Rentz said of Cutspec. “He pitched some nice, strong innings.”
“Adam pitched with divine intervention today,” said Fort Plain coach Craig Phillips. “His dad [Bill Cutspec] died of a heart attack four years ago, and he would have been here today following his son. Every pitch he threw was for his dad.”
Cutspec was a working on a one-hit shutout in the fifth when Justin Millington smacked a one-out double and Tyler Kirchhoff connected for a two-out triple. After a walk, he got a fly out to strand Kirchhoff, and in the sixth, after giving up two singles, he used two ground outs to escape the threat.
“I didn’t have much left after the fifth inning,” Cutspec said. “My arm felt amazing, but the rest of me, not so great … I just gutted it out.”
Fort Plain had its best offensive game in four sectional outings, collecting 11 hits, with Tyler Barhydt going 3-for-3 with an RBI double, two RBI singles and a walk. Baker had two singles, an RBI, three runs scored and two stolen bases, and Jim Thomas and Ryan Hudyncia both hit RBI singles.
“We bunched hits,” said Phillips, after his team avenged one of its regular season losses. “That was the big thing.”
Sam Miller went the distance for Corinth (18-8), which on Thursday rallied past Lake George for its first sectional championship in 34 years.
“We didn’t do much against him [Miller] in the first couple of innings,” Cutspec said. “Then he started losing his curve and we sat on it.”
After Cutspec doubled in the third, Baker beat out an infield single and stole second. Barhydt and Thomas hit run-scoring singles, with another run crossing on an error. Cutspec scored on another error after tripling in the fifth, and Barhydt and Hudyncia followed with run-scoring singles.
“Adam and Dustin are at the top of our order, and when they hit and get on, we’re a different team,” said Phillips.
Fort Plain will meet Section VII champ Ticonderoga in a regional semifinal game Monday at 4 at Morse Athletic Complex in Queensbury. That winner plays Section X representative Brushton-Moira Tuesday at 4 at Bleecker Stadium.
Corinth 000 010 0 — 1 5 2
Fort Plain 003 032 x — 8 11 1
Miller and Elliott; Cutspec and Hudyncia.
Chatham jumped on 10-game winner Bruce Loomis for six hits and seven runs in the first two innings, and University at Albany-bound Zach Kraham strung six zeroes in a 16-0 title-game win over Granville.
Alex Sardo and Kraham hit RBI singles, Paul Morse hit a sacrifice fly and No. 1 seed Chatham (24-3) scored on an error in a four-run first. Drew Doty hit an RBI double, Sardo hit another RBI single and Brian Gauthier added a sacrifice fly as the lead grew to 7-0 in the second.
Granville 000 000 0— 0 1 7
Chatham 439 000 x — 16 13 1
Loomis, Rescott (3), Fuller 3), Machra (5), Resetor (6) and Daigle; Kraham, Rose (7) and Gauthier.
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