Hello from state championship softball at the Adirondack Sports Complex in Queensbury.
Niagara-Wheatfield is here in Class AA, Falconer in B and Frewsburg in C.
I'll have updates throughout the day, but a light drizzle is limiting me to the iPhone right now.
9:48 a.m. Niagara-Wheatfield leads Cicero-North Syracuse, 2-1, after one in the AA semifinals.
Falcons leadoff dynamo Caitlin Attfield led off with a bunt single and came home on this fielder's choice:
The N-W rally ends with C-NS centerfielder Jenna Tartaro tracking down a nice shot off the bat of Alyssa Depetris.
10:15 a.m. Not a good bottom of the second for N-W: C-NS scores seven to take an 8-2 lead after two. The rain has picked up to a harder drizzle now.
10:55 a.m. Down the road at the Morse Athletic Complex, Frewsburg has a 4-2 lead on Haldane in a C semifinal heading to the bottom of the second. Raining here but there hasn't been a delay. Frewsburg had a four-run first in which they sent 10 batters to the plate.
11:14 a.m. Haldane scores three in the bottom of the second to take a 5-4 lead. At the end of the inning, the umpire calls a delay to address puddles at home and near third.
11:44 a.m. Play restarted fairly quickly, with Haldane adding four runs in the bottom of the third to take a 9-4 lead. Haldane with a pair of well-hit gappers to drive in their runs.
11:50 a.m. Frewsburg hasn't sent more than three batters to the plate in an inning since the first. 1-2-3 in the top of the fourth.
12:23 p.m. We are back down the road at Adirondack, where C-NS scored a run to take a 9-3 lead after three. This going back and forth & trying to time it right is going to be tough :-).
12:49 p.m. Back at Morse and Frewsburg got two back but trails, 18-6, in the bottom of the sixth. And Haldane just stole a base. Why???
12:51 p.m. Single makes it 19-6.
12:54 p.m. Two-run single made it 22-6 before the inning ended. Heading to the top of the seventh.
1:26 p.m. Section VI is 0-2. Frewsburg lost, 22-6. Niagara-Wheatfield lost, 9-2.
At the end of the Haldane game, their coach added insult to a blowout with some unsportsmanlike conduct I'll elaborate on later when I'm on a laptop and not an iPhone.
1:53 p.m. B semifinal has started.
2:02 p.m. Windsor gets one in the first after two errors and no hits. With one out, Emma Benson hit a fly to left that would have been a good running catch but the ball went in and out of the glove for a two-base error. Cara Martin followed with a hard-hit ball that went under the second baseman to score Benson.
Update from Binghamton: Dunkirk baseball has lost, 6-2. Check this link from The Journal News of Westchester County for some details (sorry for old school link but we're still updating via iPhone):
3:15 p.m. Been conserving energy with the iPhone. Windsor has a 4-0 lead heading to the bottom of the fifth. Windsor added three runs in the second.
3:22 p.m. Falconer gets one back with an RBI single by No 9 hitter Allyson Roach. She drove in Shelby Overturf, who walked then moved to third on two fielder's choices. Heading to the sixth.
3:47 p.m. It's a final: Windsor 4, Falconer 1.
Ballgame over. Section VI softball season over. Western New York high school season over.
* * *
My apologies about not updating this sooner (I'm writing it Monday). Saturday was a longgggg day (my story is here), Sunday was spent traveling (and recovering :-) ).
The unfortunate incident I witnessed at the end of the Class C semifinal was this:
Haldane is leading Frewsburg, 22-6, and as I noted in the blog, they were stealing bases very late in the game with a huge lead. Unnecessary and could be called classless, but it is a separate issue from what I'm about to describe.
Frewsburg, on the wrong side of the worst kind of score, seemed to be handling it as well as they could. An infielder committed an error by booting the ball late in the game, and the Frewsburg assistant joked with her that she might have tried to kick it directly to a teammate for a great play.
They were losing a big-time game, but Frewsburg seemed to have everything in perspective.
Not so on the other side.
In the top of the seventh, the last ups for Frewsburg in the game -- which was, as a reminder, 22-6 -- the leadoff batter hit a hard comebacker to the mound and was thrown out by the pitcher, who had been hit with the ball and was in some degree of pain. As the batter returned to the dugout, she passed home plate, where she received some encouraging words and a high-five from the on-deck batter.
Then I noticed that the on-deck batter had a very surprised look on her face and appeared to be talking to the catcher. The on-deck batter said something to the effect of, "No, I wasn't talking about that ... I was talking about a different thing."
The pitcher stayed in the game and the blowout ended promptly two outs later. Then I saw the same on-deck batter, with Frewsburg coach, at the end of postgame handshake line talking with the Haldane coach. It was a brief conversation in which the Frewsburg player looked to be attempting to explain some kind of misunderstanding.
According to Frewsburg people, the Haldane coach had yelled at the on-deck batter because he thought the Frewsburg players were celebrating the fact that the pitcher had been hurt. That's why the batter was in shock that she was being yelled at for something she didn't do. At the end of the game, the player wanted to explain this misunderstanding to the Haldane coach, who apparently wasn't buying the explanation. I saw the Frewsburg coaching staff make a NYSPHSAA representative aware of the Haldane coach's actions.
The player is a sophomore -- actually almost all of Frewsburg's players are sophomores (one senior, two juniors on roster) -- and after the game the incident left her upset to the point of tears.
It's an incident that didn't need to happen. A coach should speak to -- much less yell -- at an opposing player only in the rarest of cases, and this certainly didn't qualify. There was also an opportunity to smooth out what could have been a bad misunderstanding during the handshake, one that was initiated by the Frewsburg player, but that was, according to Frewsburg, rebuffed by the Haldane coach.
It's an utter lack of perspective, which in my opinion is the worst thing about high school sports. Coaches and parents (and sometimes players) that go overboard in the way they handle themselves and in the way they deal with the action on the field hijack what is a wonderful athletic and educational experience and take it places it shouldn't go. They take things too seriously to the point where they embarrass themselves.
Coach, you won a state semifinal game -- and left a girl on the other team in tears. Congratulations.
Haldane lost the state championship game later Saturday afternoon.
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