Democrat Photo by Frank Rizzo
of Fallsburg hurls a pitch to Kyle Kloorfain of
Chester in Wednesdays 18-1 romp by the host
Comets in Fallsburg. Fine yielded one hit
in the seventh inning and struck out eight
in the complete game.
Romp Behind Fine
By Frank Rizzo
FALLSBURG April 14, 2000 -- A pity the mercy rule was not in force,
else Fallsburg could have put an end to the misery
much sooner in Wednesdays wind-blasted,
cold-weather baseball game.
The visiting Chester Hambletonians basically a
jayvee squad with a couple of seniors to give it varsity
legitimacy were easy pickings for the Comets, who
romped 18-1 to improve to 21 in the Orange County
League (OCL) National Conference Division II standings.
The 15-run mercy rule only applies to OCL jayvee and
modified baseball games; contests such as Fallsburg-Chester or the 38-1 humiliation Cornwall
inflicted on John S. Burke recently might change that
Rafi Fine picked up his first win for the Comets,
limiting Chester to one hit a solid single by Seth
Roche to lead off the seventh. Fine fanned eight and
This was a very positive experience for him,
said Fallsburg co-coach Jamie Lent. Rafi
doesnt overpower anyone, but hes got good
control and works the plate well and can put the ball
where he wants to.
Tim Gilmore supplied the firepower, blasting four homers
(and hitting for the cycle with a solo, two-
and three-run shots and a grand slam) and driving in 10
I was so relaxed out there you cant
have too much tension at the plate, Gilmore
commented. I mostly try to put the ball in
Overwhelming the Visitors
The lone run by Chester came in the first, on an outfield
Fallsburg wasted no time against Chester starter John Bienskie. With one out in the Fallsburg half of the
first, Fine tied the game with a homer, and Gilmore
followed up by launching an offering well beyond the 335
foot mark in the power alley.
Bienskie retired the first two Comets in the second, but
then gave up a homer to Corey Buckner. A solid single by
Corey Huber and a walk to Fine set up Gilmores
three-run homer and a 6-1 Fallsburg lead.
After Bienskie hit Austin Pantel and gave up a bloop
single to Joe Calvello, his mound duties were taken away
as Ray Otte came on to pitch and temporarily stop the
Ottes turn came in the third, when he yielded a
run-scoring double to Huber before loading the bases and
offering a first-pitch homer to Gilmore, whose ball
barely cleared the fence.
After Huber opened the fifth with a double and came on to
score on an error, Gilmore greeted the new pitcher,
Dustin Siegel, with a two-run homer and 14-1 Fallsburg
A two-run double by designated hitter Shawn Hindes later
in the inning padded the lead.
In the sixth, Gilmore merely doubled, sending
Fine, who had walked, to third. Pantels sac fly
scored Fine, and a double by Joe Calvello then plated
Gilmore with the final run.
Some pity for the hapless opponent was expressed in the
Comet dugout, to which Lent reminded his players,
Were not that far removed from where they are
now. Theyll turn it around, like we did.
This is Lents second varsity season guiding the
Comets, along with Brett Cancredi. Three years ago, the
pair were co-coaching the Fallsburg jayvee squad.
We brought a lot of these guys up through the
system, Lent commented. We have a nice
mixture on the team.
Another Competitive Year
The Division II race should be competitive, according to
Lent, especially since defending Class D state champ S.S.
Seward of Florida has graduated most of its team.
Tuxedo and Florida are both solid, and
Tuxedos had our number, Lent commented.
On April 5, the Comets lost to visiting Tuxedo 8-6 as the
Tornadoes scored four in the sixth and two in the seventh
to pull out the win.
Gilmore took the loss after limiting Tuxedo to two runs
through five. Darren Kinney and Austin Pantel had two
Last Friday the Comets traveled to Liberty and won 10-2
behind Kinneys pitching. At the plate, Kinney went
2-for-4 while Gilmore was 3-for-4 with three RBI and
Calvello added four RBI. Dan Mitro pitched one inning of
Lent discounted the easy win, aided by Fallsburg jumping
out ahead 8-0.
I think they (Liberty) had one of those bad days,
just like we had against Tuxedo, he said.
Wasting no time in the transition from an excellent
basketball season, senior Tim Gilmore has had a hot
He began the season by no-hitting Eldred 7-0 in a March
30 non-league game. he fanned 15 in the game while
slamming a two-run homer.
Ive been going to Steve Pintos for the
past few weeks, starting the last two weeks of the
basketball season, Gilmore said, mentioning the Pro
Prospects baseball school run by Rock Hills Pinto,
ex-player coach for the Catskill Cougars. Its
been helping with getting my mechanics ready. This is
definitely the best start Ive ever had.
Regarding the upcoming season, Gilmore said,
Were shooting for the division and conference
titles, and to go as far as we can in sectionals. We have
the unit [to do it] this year. Everyone is more
Notes: When do you think our first
warm game will be? Huber asked Buckner in the
chilly dugout. I dont know, replied the
senior second baseman. I was thinking maybe the
spring break tournament. The Comets will be playing
later this month in the tourney, hosted by Delaware
Lent gave credit to the maintenance staff
for getting the soggy field ready for play
returned to varsity action after one year off. The
Hambletonians are coached by veteran Tony Mancuso, who
turned the program around at Orange County CC. Mancuso
acknowledged that it will be a long year dealing with his
inexperienced squad but, Im on the Jimmy
Johnson plan, he said to with a laugh. Johnson, of
course, took the Dallas Cowboys from one win to the Super
Bowl in a space of three years.