SAUGERTIES — Greg Shaw has been clutch.
No. 2 Cornwall upset No. 1 Wallkill, 4-3, in nine innings to win the Section 9 Class A baseball championship at Cantine Field on Sunday, for the second consecutive season.
Division I commit Greg Shaw hit a go-ahead solo home run over the left-field wall in the top of the ninth-inning.
“I was just trying to get on base and I ran into one and I was able to put it over the fence,” Shaw said on his big at-bat.
But it wasn’t the only time Shaw came up big. In the top of the seventh inning, Shaw hit what would be the go-ahead RBI single at the time to the opposite field, scoring Ryan Sawyer from second. Shaw would enter the game in the bottom of the seventh in relief of Ryan Sawyer, but give up the tying run, a two-strike, RBI single by Wallkill’s Bryce DeGroat, scoring Jacob Maraday, sending the game to extras.
Shaw stranded Jack Rauschenbach on second in the bottom of the eighth inning, which would set him up for his clutch at-bat in the ninth.
Logan Marquez started the game and pitched 2 1/3 innings, before Ryan Sawyer threw four innings in relief. Greg Shaw came on in the seventh inning and earned the save, striking out two Panther batters in the final inning.
“That’s our goal,” Sawyer said on the second straight Class A title. “That’s been our goal from the start of the year. We took it one game at a time and we’re very fortunate to come home with a championship.”
The Dragons sported camo uniforms with the name of the veteran that they play for on the back, with it being Memorial Day weekebd.
“It’s the coolest thing that we can celebrate and talk about this and do something for all of the people other than ourselves,” Cornwall coach Tom Fanning said. “It’s just bigger. We talk about it all the time, it’s not a team, it’s a program. And it’s a program that extends to people and the veterans that we really take seriously and the kids really buy into it and it’s so awesome. They really enjoy wearing it and they understand the importance of it. And especially this weekend of all weekends, it’s unbelievable.”
What it means
The Dragons will face Section 1 winner Somers in a subregional game at Cantine Field in Saugerties on June 2 at 4 p.m.
Player of the game
Greg Shaw hit the go-ahead solo home run in the top of the ninth inning, which ultimately helped the Dragons defend their title. While playing third base in the sixth inning, Shaw snagged a liner and threw it over to first baseman Luciano Fiorello for the inning-ending double-play. In the seventh inning, he put his team on top with an RBI single, which gave his team a 3-2 lead at the time. On the mound, he earned the save.
By the numbers
No. 2 Cornwall (19-1) — Jayden Lont had an RBI single to knot the score at one in the top of third inning, before Wallace Kirkpatrick had an RBI double to follow, giving the Dragons a 2-1 lead at the time.
No. 1 Wallkill (16-5) — Southpaw Chase Hermance pitched seven innings, before Jacob Quiles came in for relief. Bryce DeGroat tied the score in the bottom of the seventh inning with an RBI single, which scored Jacob Maraday.
“Greg Shaw has been that all week, all year and all of the years he has been on varsity. And to bounce back after being ahead and giving up the run. He held them down and then he comes back and hits a home run? It’s unbelievable. So I’m proud of him for not just coming in and being a good player, but just having the mindfulness of not quitting, not being dejected. We do mindfulness one day a week, in a session that we do for a half hour every week and it’s just about bouncing back and maintaining and not going the high and the low. And he does a great job of it, his demeanor is never wavering and that’s the best part about him.” – Cornwall coach Tom Fanning said on Greg Shaw.
“Well I knew I was coming in all year and that’s kind of been my role all year, so I’ve been very used to it. And the big thing for our team is picking each other up. Logan [Marquez] started well, but he got into a little bit of a jam, so that’s when I come in and I pick Logan up. I stay aggressive, go right after hitters, and then I get a little tired, and then Greg [Shaw] comes in and picks us up, so we just do a good job as a team of picking each other up.” – Cornwall pitcher Ryan Sawyer on the team’s mindset.
This article originally appeared on Times Herald-Record: Section 9 baseball: Cornwall defeats Wallkill in extras to defend title