CLICK HERE to read my feature story on Byram Hills’ dream season, which included a surprise run-in with Yankees manager Joe Girardi. The Bobcats have had a memorable year, winning the first section title in program history, and getting some words of encouragement from the Yankee skipper only added to the story.
Here is a scouting report on what the Bobcats can expect this weekend in Binghamton as they compete for a New York State championship…
Class A state semifinal
Byram Hills (20-5) vs. Section 8’s Division (26-4)
When: Saturday at 10 a.m.
Where: Maine-Endwell HS
Key players: BH — Nick Contillo, Sr., 1B; Tommy Gagliardi, Sr., 2B; Kellen Hatheway, Sr., SS; John Spadafino, So., 3B/DH; Frankie Vesuvio, Jr., RHP/CF. Div — Ronmel Ocampo, Jr., RHP/2B/3B; Anthony Papa, Sr., RHP/OF; James Varela, Sr., RHP/OF.
Outlook: With a deep pitching staff, Division is currently the top-ranked team in New York State in Class A. Anthony Papa tossed a shutout in the Long Island Championship win over Bayport-Blue Point and James Varela has also been dominant at times. Byram will almost surely throw ace Frankie Vesuvio, who has allowed just one earned run over 20 innings in three playoff starts while averaging over a strikeout per inning. With him on the mound, the Bobcats will take their chances against anyone.
Coach speak: “It’s all about the preparation for us, and these guys have been prepared all year long. We’re certainly happy with the success that we’ve had. It’s been a great year, but I don’t think anybody in this dugout is satisfied. We truly want to go down as one of the greats in school history and we want to go down as one of those great teams in Section 1 history. All year long, we’ve played to win it all, and we have two more games to go.” — Byram Hills coach Scott Saunders
Up next: The winner will play the Queensbury (Section 2) vs. Hamburg (Section 6) winner in the state championship game at 4 p.m. on Saturday at Maine-Endwell High.
Photo by Frank Becerra Jr./The Journal News