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Roller coaster ride for Lee baseball last week as Hoosac wins

LEE – Baseball has always been a game of highs and lows, as the Wildcats found out last week.

After starting off the week with the Wildcats’ first win over Wahconah in 11 years, the ‘Cats dropped two games to their North County foes, Hoosac and Mt. Greylock.

Lee utilized a seven-run sixth inning to beat Wahconah in Dalton, 10-5, on Thursday, before returning home to allow a nine-run third inning to drop to Hoosac, 11-2.

“We weren’t getting strikes, and it’s tough to play defense when you get back on your heels a little bit,” said Lee Head Coach Chip Cummings. “When you’re not throwing strikes, they are going to make things happen.”

Hoosac made things happen with nine stolen bases in the first three innings as they built an early 11-0 lead, as Lee all-star catcher Heamon Williams was given the day off from behind the plate and covered second base.

“Just trying to give [Williams] some rest – he threw some innings against Wahconah as our closer – trying to preserve the arm – it’s a long season, and it’s a lot of pitches to handle every day behind the plate,” Cummings said.

While the Hurricanes were tearing up the base paths early and often against the ‘Cats, Lee’s starting pitcher, Matt Consolati, struggled with his delivery and finding the strike zone.

Consolati pitched only two and one-third innings, allowing eight runners to reach by either the walk or by a hit by pitch.

In Hoosac’s nine-run third inning, freshman right-fielder Matt Koperniak added all the firepower the Hurricanes would need, as he laced a two-run single before coming up again in the third to hit a shot over the right-fielder’s head for a three-run double to put the game out of reach.

“[Koperniak] has the nicest swing I’ve seen in a long time,” said Hoosac Head Coach Bob Rivard. “He doesn’t make too many mistakes and he has a nice swing, and we just hope he gets better.”

The Hurricanes’ Matt Braman went six full innings for the win, allowing six hits and one unearned run on a wild pitch.

“I was hoping to get five or six [innings] out of [Braman] – he is a tough kid and a strong kid,” Rivard said.

The one lone bright spot for the Wildcats against Hoosac was the bat and legs of shortstop John Graziano.

Graziano, who took the year off from baseball last spring, has found his swing already this year as the senior had three of the team’s seven hits against Hoosac, including a double in the fourth.

“[Graziano] is on a tear right now,” Cummings said. “He is aggressive and [had] some good base-running at the end of the game.”

Graziano had three stolen bases on the afternoon, including a play where the shortstop went from first to third on a wild pitch, before scoring on a passed ball for the ‘Cats’ second run.

Unfortunately for Lee, the roller coaster ride continued on Monday afternoon as they traveled to Williamstown to take on the Mounties.

Behind ace J.T. Brown, the ‘Cats jumped out to a 5-0 lead after three and a half, yet couldn’t hold on before dropping the game in eight innings by a score of 6-5.

“Everybody kept playing, that’s the key for us – don’t stop playing,” Cummings said. “We preach to the kids – don’t quit.”

If Lee wants to make the tournament, that’s exactly what they will have to do.

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Posted by on April 25, 2013. Filed under High School Sports,Sports. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry
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