TROY – A pitcher’s duel turned into a runaway victory for Shenendehowa.
The Plainsmen scored six runs in the top of the ninth inning to defeat Niskayuna 7-1 for the Section 2 Class AA baseball title Monday, June 3 at Joseph Bruno Stadium.
Jake Reinisch got the ninth-inning rally started with an RBI triple to plate pinch runner C.J. Latham with the go-ahead run. Niskayuna nearly got out of the jam allowing just the one run, but back-to-back bases-loaded singles by Sam Law and Patrick McGuire plated three more runs. Law and McGuire then scored on a wild pitch by Cole Hedden to give the Plainsmen a 7-1 lead.
Reinisch drove in McGuire with the game’s first run on a fielder’s choice in the top of the first inning. Niskayuna tied the score in the third when Aaron Whitley scored from second on a two-out single by Jacob Hand, but that was all Shen would allow in winning the Section 2 title.
Starting pitcher Brendan Disonell tossed eight solid innings to earn the victory for Shen. Disonell scattered four hits, struck out nine batters and walked one. Niskayuna starter Sam Morra also turned in a strong performance, allowing three hits and striking out nine, but he took the loss after allowing the go-ahead run on Reinisch’s RBI triple in the ninth.
Shen advances to the state regional round, where it will face Section 3 champion Fayetteville-Manlius Saturday at Onondaga Community College in Syracuse.
The other four Section 2 representatives in the state playoffs are Ballston Spa (Class A), Schuylerville (Class B), Fort Plain (Class C) and Whitehall (Class D). Ballston Spa, Schuylerville and Fort Plain hit the road Thursday for the regional semifinal round, while Whitehall plays Section 9 champion Livingston Manor in Saturday’s regional final at Cantine Field in Saugerties.
Ballston Spa takes on Section 10’s Massena Thursday at Salmon River High School in the Class A regionals, while Schuylerville plays Section 7 champion Northeastern Clinton at Bob Bellizzi Field in Albany. Fort Plain – the top-ranked team in Class C – play Norwood-Norfolk Thursday at Canton High School.