By Ted Waddell
LIBERTY July 13, 2004 In Saturdays Greater Hudson Valley Baseball League doubleheader against the Dukes of Marlboro, the Catskill Cougars lost the first game 8-5 and in the second were shut out by a final score of 10-0.
Marlboro wasted little time in taking a lead in the first game of the afternoon, scoring a run in the second inning. But it was a lead that was erased during the Cougars turn at bat in the second when Harris Seletsky legged it across the plate.
However, the Dukes scored a run in the third to make it a 2-1 ballgame.
Marlboro added a couple of runs in the fourth.
The Cougars scored a run in the bottom of the fourth as Troy Kirchner crossed the plate to make it a 4-2 contest.
But in the next three frames, the Dukes racked up four runs to give them a six-run (8-2) edge going into the bottom of the final inning. Marlboro scored one run in the fifth, one in the sixth and two in the seventh.
At their turn at bat in the bottom of the seventh, the Cougars hit the comeback trail as Corey Van Kueren, Rob Silva and Casey Pazzalia all scored.
The big hit of the inning was Pazzalias two-run double, which brought both Silva and Van Kueren across home plate.
With two outs in the final frame and the bases loaded with teammates Dave Luczyski, Troy Kirchner and Casey Pazzalia, Joe Sep stepped up to the plate for the Cougars.
Pazzalia legged it home on a passed ball to cut the Marlboro lead to 8-5.
With a full count and plenty of encouragement from the dugout and coaches and runners at first and second, Sep went down swinging.
A.J. Baglieri got the win for the Dukes, pitching six innings and allowing two runs one of which was unearned. Pitcher Dan Tomanelli closed out the game for Marlboro.
Kirchner pitched the whole game for the Cougars.
Catskill lost two runs on fine relay throws from the Marlboro outfield to home plate. They were plays at the plate that Cougars Coach Tom Pazzalia called beautiful.
In the second game of the afternoon, Terry Walsh pitched a one-hitter for Marlboro. The only Cougar to get a hit was Sep, who ripped a triple.
I thought we played well, Marlboro Coach John Casey said. We executed offensively and had runners on base, and we scored them on sacrifice flies and groundouts.
We built up a 9-2 lead, he added. One run here, two runs there
no big hits until a two-run homer by Terry Walsh in the last inning. We added them up by playing good baseball.
Catskill Coach Tom Pazzalia said it was a good, clean, well-played game without a lot of errors.
Marlboro is one of the class teams in the league, a powerhouse, he said.
My teams been on fire in the last two games, Pazzalia added. Today we ran into some tough pitching, but we put together a nice little comeback in the last inning.
As Catskill and Marlboro battled on the diamond, the Cougars bat boy, Matthew Higgins, 8, took a break from his assigned duties of chasing down foul balls in the tall weeds by trying on Kevin McGuires catchers gear.
Perhaps Higgins was dreaming of a future when he is behind the plate as the Cougars catcher.