By Andy Simek
COCHECTON CENTER June 20, 2006 When the dust settled back onto Heinle Field and the sun relieved the day of its blistering heat, the Cochecton Center Softball Tournament was completed, but with a startling conclusion.
The double-elimination tournament consisted of 10 local teams and went on from early Saturday morning to late Sunday evening.
This weekends tremendous heat and humidity made the event more of an endurance test than a softball tournament, but the teams showed no sign of it.
The final game of the tournament was played between Matthews on Main and the Stone Arch Inn.
The game got off to an exciting start when Matthews came up to bat in the top of the first. Billy Nordenhold, Matt Buddenhagen and Joe Meyer, the top three hitters of the order, all made it home, scoring the first three runs of what was to be many more for Matthews.
Chris Hubert, playing for the Stone Arch Inn, scored the one and only run for his team by hitting an inside-the-park home run in the bottom of the second.
The top of the fifth is what sealed the deal for a sure win for Matthews. Nearly everybody on the team got up to the batters box and made it home, giving them an incredible nine runs on top of the four that had already been scored.
After the fifth inning, with Matthews holding a 13-1 lead, the teams called it quits and declared that they would be Co-Champions of the tournament. The hour was getting late, and everybody was spent.
The double-elimination rule would have meant another game was to be played if Matthews won, due to the Stone Arch Inn being undefeated, and neither team could easily schedule another game together.
So good sportsmanship lives on in Cochecton Center, where two grueling days of softball left the two final teams exhausted.
When asked about how he felt about sharing the title, Matthews Coach Brian Buday said, Thats the way it goes.