One call in a crucial moment can completely change the complexion of a game, and that certainly was the case in White Plains’ 5-1 win over New Rochelle on Thursday. An extremely well-pitched and well-played game from both teams began to unravel for the Huguenots in the top of the sixth, as White Plains senior Kyle Adams was called safe on a stolen base attempt after the throw appeared to get to second well before Adams did.
The umpire ruled that a tag was never made, and as we see so often after a controversial call, the team that benefited went onto capitalize.
“The throw definitely beat me,” Adams said. “I saw (New Rochelle’s John) Valente, the shortstop, lined up in the middle of the bag. I figured that the only way I had a shot in was if I tried to go around it. I did a little hook slide around the bag and the ump made his call.”
The safe call extended the inning for the Tigers with two outs, and they went onto put up four runs, turning a one-run lead into a 5-0 stranglehold. The result was a huge win from White Plains, which had been swept by the Huguenots last season and lost to them in a one-run game earlier in the week.
“It’s a big win,” White Plains coach Marcel Galligani said. “We weren’t banking our whole season on this one game, but it was certainly a big win after a tough loss on Tuesday against these guys.”
• If I’m being completely honest, from my vantage point, it looked like a bad call. But, with that being said, my initial reaction was that he might have missed the tag, and that was the explanation that was given. It’s just one of those plays that really stands out because of how early the throw got there. “The throw had him beat probably by about 12 steps – literally,” Galligani said. “I’ve got to be completely honest with you, 99 percent of umpires would have called the kid out at second base. That guy had the gumption to make the call, because a tag never occurred. I’ve got to give him credit for doing the right thing and making the right call, instead of taking the easy way out.”
• Here is New Rochelle coach Pete Annunziata’s take on the call: “The catcher made a perfect throw, and the ball was waiting for the base stealer at the base. For me, watching this level of baseball, it’s just hard to believe that the player missed the tag, but the explanation that I got was that the player missed the tag.”
• With Adams on second and two outs in the inning, the Tigers rallied. Juan Payero walked and then Chris Medeot hit an RBI single to drive in Adams, but the ball got booted in center, which allowed Payero to score. Then, on a bizarre mental lapse from the Huguenots, Medeot snuck in and scored before time was officially called, extending White Plains’ lead to 4-0. “I couldn’t be happier for the kid because he really threw his heart out for us on Tuesday, and he came up today and had a couple of tough at-bats early in the game,” Galligani said of Medeot. “He was able to stay strong mentally and put up a good at-bat in a tough situation.”
• Mike Lotito and Sean Nicholson followed that sequence with back-to-back singles, with another error allowing Lotito to score. Just like that, the Tigers had a 5-0 lead, as the Huguenots were starting to let things get out of hand in light of the controversial call. “That was the point that I made to the team after the game,” Annunziata said. “There are certain things that you can control, and obviously an umpire’s call is something that you can’t control, but the way that you handle it is something that hopefully is the one thing that we take from this game. If we’re going to get better – and we do have to get better – it’s got to be about what did we do wrong after the bad break.”
• Adams is probably White Plains’ best all-around player, and after a booming double in the first, the Huguenots walked him in his next two at-bats — one being intentional. “Maybe a little bit, but I can’t let that dictate,” Adams said when I asked if he felt like New Ro was being careful with him. “They tried to pitch around me a little bit, and I just have to stay within myself. I can’t chase, and luckily for me, I didn’t.”
• The wild sixth inning overshadowed strong pitching performances from each starter. New Rochelle’s Anthony Mirabile went 5 2/3 innings while allowing three earned runs and striking out six, but Lukas Repetti (pictured to the right) was even better for the Tigers. The junior right-hander finished with a final line of: 6 IP, 0 R, 3 H, 4 BB, 1 HBP, 91 pitches (53 strikes, 38 balls). “After facing their hitters on Tuesday, I got a pretty good view of them,” Adams said. “With (Repetti), he was locating all of his pitches today – his fastball, curveball, changeup. Whenever you can get ahead with strike one, it’s a lot easier to call a game.”
• Repetti was locating well all game, especially working the outside corner against New Ro’s righties. He also spoke about his offspeed pitches being pretty sharp today. “The top of their lineup – 1, 2, 3 and 4 – they have a lot of speed, and they can also hit. I wanted to hit the outside corner a lot, because I knew they could turn on inside stuff, like inside fastballs,” he said. “My fastball was good – I left a couple up in the zone – but my offspeed stuff, like my changeup, is usually one of my harder pitches to locate, but that was all coming good today. I was happy with that.”
• With a 5-0 lead, Galligani took the conservative approach and took Repetti out to start the seventh. He had been at 66 pitches going into the sixth, but labored a bit and finished the inning at 91. “I was,” Repetti said when asked if he was hoping to finish the game. “But coach saw it, and I could kind of tell that my mechanics were getting a little thrown off. I threw a lot the inning before and walked a few guys, so my pitch count got up. He wanted to save me and not overdo it.”
• White Plains gave up just three total runs in two games against the Huguenots, as pitching really seems to be the strength of this team. Medeot and Repetti form a solid one-two punch, but Kevin Nicholson has also pitched well as the team’s No. 3. The Tigers have two games coming next week against six-time league champ Mamaroneck, so more tests are coming. “That’s huge coming back for us in our first series in league play,” Adams said. “They played a good game against us on Tuesday – Valente had a good outing for them – so it’s nice to come back out here and rebound. We just have to keep that momentum rolling.”
• Mirabile’s final line (5.2 IP, 5 R, 3 ER, 6 H, 3 BB, 1 IBB, 1 HBP, 6 K, 84 pitches, 53 strikes, 31 balls) probably doesn’t do justice to how well he pitched. He was very effective through the first five innings, and really could have been out of the sixth with only one run on the board and a relatively low pitch count if Adams was called out. “He was fantastic,” Annunziata said. “He changed speeds well, he threw his curveball for strikes early, he threw it down and away late to get strikeouts, he worked both side of the plate – I was really, really happy with him. And he was efficient. His pitch count wasn’t even really that elevated in the sixth… I’ll tell you exactly what I said to him. I said, ‘You deserve better.’ ”
• Mirabile’s performance bodes well for New Ro moving forward because he will be relied as as their No. 2. Valente is the staff ace and pitched his best game of the young season on Tuesday, but Lou Miceli is dealing with a slight labrum issue that will keep him out until late in the season — if not the entire season (although he is still able to DH). The Huguenots are scheduled to play Fox Lane tomorrow, which means that they’ll likely have to go with a pitcher that doesn’t have much varsity experience against a very potent lineup, but then again, the forecast is not good. At all.
• I’ll give the final word to Repetti: “New Ro is always a team that you want to beat. It’s a rival school, and we always play a good game against them. I was on the team last year, and after coming so close (on Tuesday), we were really happy to get this win. We want to continue to get wins through league play.”
• To see the play-by-play action and full box score, click here to see how I scored the game on iScore.
Here are the rest of the results that we’ve received so far tonight:
Arlington 2, Lakeland 1: At Lakeland Wednesday, Ryan Arena had two of the Hornets’ four hits. Chris Didomizio allowed just four hits by the Admirals, who scored the winning run in the seventh.
Panas 7, Brewster 4: At Panas Wednesday, Tom Parish and Pat Rucci each had two RBI. Anthony Iannuzzi, Brian Holderman and Chris Dahl each had one. Chris Brandt had two RBI for the Bears.
Somers 15, Beacon 8: At Somers Wednesday, Anthony Diana had three RBI, two runs, a double and a triple. Adam Jacobs had three RBI, two runs and a double. Ryan Nealon had three RBI and a run.
Lourdes 7, Putnam Valley 5: At Putnam Valley Wednesday, John Meagle had three RBI off of 2 for 4 hitting with one run scored. Ryan Basso added one RBI off of 3 for 4 hitting with one run scored.
Pleasantville 9, Rye 1: At Pleasantville Wednesday, Anthony Godino had a home run, a double, a triple, two RBI and three runs. James Leyden had four RBI. John Tucci had a triple and two RBI. Tim DeGraw scored for Rye.
Ardsley 8, Dobbs Ferry 3: At Ardsley, Gabe Kardish went 4 for 4 with three doubles and an RBI for the Panthers. Joe DeGuardia had a two-run double. Teammate Mitch Gross took the win allowing one run on four hits in five innings, allowing a walk and struck out seven. Dan Riefenhauser took the loss and had a double an an RBI for the Eagles.
Eastchester 14, Edgemont 3: At Eastchester, Marc Medico pitched a four hitter with 13 strikeouts. Greg Satriale had three RBI. Kyle Crimmins went 3 for 3 with two RBI and two runs. Devin Merone went 3 for 4 with two RBI. Brendon Freedman went 2 for 4 with one RBI for the Panthers.
Hen Hud 12, North Salem 1: At North Salem, Hunter Glasoff went 3 for 5 and had two RBI. Carson Cole went 4 for 5 and had an RBI. Dan Capra went 2 for 3 and had an RBI for the Tigers.
Valhalla 3, Westlake 2: At Westlake, Louis Ingrassia pitched a three-hitter, allowing one earned run while walking two and striking out eight. Joseph Lovecchio had two RBI for the Vikings. Michael McLynn pitched a complete game for the Wildcats, allowing five hits and two earned runs.
Nyack 10, East Ramapo 3: At Nyack, Jordan Mews had a two run home run and had another RBI for the Indians. Austin Cavazzi went 3 for 3 and had an RBI. Joshua Williams had an RBI for the Titans.
Irvington 5, Sleepy Hollow 4: At Irvington, Shoran Tamura (3 for 4, double, RBI) scored the go-ahead run in the bottom of the fourth inning from third on a throwing error for the Bulldogs. Andrew Brennan tied the game in the bottom of the third inning for the Bulldogs on a safety squeeze. Inmer Rosado drove in two runs for the Headless Horsemen. Sleepy Hollow had the bases loaded in the top of the seventh with two outs but the game ended on a caught stealing.
Stepinac 3, Mount St. Michael 2: At Mount St. Michael, Danny Hoffer had two RBI and a double. Skylar Mercado had two runs. Joe Signore had an RBI and a double. Brendan Campos scored. Winning pitcher Matt Schumacher struck out three.
Mamaroneck 12, Scarsdale 0: At Scarsdale, Will Hofmann allowed one hit over four innings to improve to 4-0. Mike Adler pitched the final three innings and allowed just one hit. Mat Marino and JC Ruggerio each homered.
John Jay 10, Yorktown 6: At Yorktown, the Indians scored four runs in the seventh to break a 6-6 tie. Tyler Keech went 3 for 5 with a double, a home run, two runs scored and two RBI. Jack Weiller went 3 for 4 with three runs scored. Vincent Finelli hit a three-run homer for the Huskers.
Tuckahoe 6, Palisade Prep 1
Hastings 5, Yonkers 3
Carmel 12, Panas 5
Photos by Frank Becerra Jr./The Journal News