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Sports Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, May 26, 2011

Dutchmen baseball knocked out of sectionals in first round

By Jordan J. Michael

GUILDERLAND –– The Dutchmen’s hopes of repeating as Class AA baseball champions were thwarted by the arm of Troy senior Jesse Twiss on Tuesday in the first- round of playoffs.

Twiss, who, after the game, credited the “excellent” defense behind him, threw a complete game shutout, giving up four hits and striking out six. Twiss also scored the go- ahead run in the first inning, sliding in safely under Andrew Faragon’s tag at home plate.

That one run was all the Flying Horses would need for the upset over Guilderland. Anthony Ragosta added an insurance run with a sacrifice fly in the sixth inning. Troy won, 2 to 0.

“I’ve been waiting for this moment since I was a sophomore,” Twiss said of starting a sectional game. “It was worth the wait. I push all my teammates, but you can’t push them without going out there and getting it done.”

Twiss caused many Dutch batters to swing and miss throughout the day. When the batters did make contact, the ball would either pop up or be grounded to a Troy infielder. Guilderland got a lead-off single by Devin Fisher in the first inning, but the team went cold after that.

Eric Golderman tried to rally Guilderland in the seventh with a lead-off single, but Twiss got Tim O’Connor to ground out into a double play. Dylan Collett popped out to ice the victory.

“I pounded a slider all day and it felt like a fastball,” said Twiss, who threw three straight curves to O’Connor for the huge double play. “I found my pitches and everything worked out.”

In hindsight, it’s clear senior Vinny Tamburello pitched well enough for the Dutchmen to win, but the offensive support just wasn’t enough.

“I thought he had a really great performance,” Guilderland Head Coach Doug LaValley said of Tamburello. “He got no support. That’s baseball.”

Tamburello also got plenty of pop-ups and ground balls from the Troy batters, who scattered five hits. Tamburello had the bases loaded in the seventh inning, but struck out Marcus Uhmann to keep the game close.

“Troy was better than us today…They did everything right,” Tamburello said. “We didn’t play shitty; just didn’t hit. Can’t win with that.”

Senior Harry Brodsky, who reached on an infield hit in the third inning, told The Enterprise that Twiss had “great pitching.” After Brodsky reached first, Fisher was thrown out at home to end the third inning.

“He mixed up his pitches early in the count,” Brodsky said of Twiss. “We couldn’t find any holes.”

Guilderland’s early exit in the first round came as a surprise, considering that the team was the Class AA state runner-up in 2010. The Dutch finished the 2011 regular season with the same 11-9 record as a year ago.

“I thought we could go all the way again,” said LaValley, who likes to be optimistic. “It just wasn’t meant to be.”

The Dutchmen beat the Flying Horses for the Class AA championship in 2007. LaValley thought, maybe that was some added motivation for Troy.

“We wanted to go very far, no doubt,” said Brodsky, who will be thinking of 11 years of baseball that he’s played. “This especially sucks for us seniors. Nothing is worse than this. It sucks to lose.”

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