LOWVILLE – It isn’t often that a baseball team gives up 10 runs in an inning and wins. But then, a squad like McGraw’s doesn’t come along very often, either.
The seventh-seeded Eagles led 4-0 after the top of the first against No. 6 Poland in Friday’s Section 3 Class D semifinal game in Lowville before the Tornadoes ripped through the bottom half of the inning to the tune of a 10-spot. When all was said and done, however, McGraw came back and emerged with a wild demonstration of resiliency in the form of a 19-13 win.
That puts coach Ed Pickert’s team, now 9-5, in Sunday’s 2 p.m. Class D championship game at Murnane Field’s Donovan Stadium in Utica against top-seeded Lyme, now 14-1-1 after a 7-0 win over Central Counties League champion Brookfield, the fourth seed, in the second half of Friday’s Lowville twinbill.
The Eagles were down 11-5 to Poland after two innings and 12-7 after three before exploding with a big inning of their own, scoring six runs in the fourth to go up 13-12. Poland tied it with a run in the bottom of the fourth. Four runs in the sixth put McGraw up for good, with two more runs in the seventh as insurance.
Winning pitcher Chris Pickert went 4-for-5 with two triples, two RBIs and four runs scored and Brendan May went 3-for-5 with a triple, three RBIs and two runs scored to lead McGraw’s 14-hit attack. Pickert gave up six hits and six earned runs with eight strikeouts in six innings of mound work.
Jaycob White went 2-for-4 with two RBIs and two runs and Evan Ignatowski was 2-for-5 with two RBIs and two runs for McGraw, which also benefited from nine walks and seven hit batters. Tyler Card had a triple, two RBIs and four runs scored and Logan Eaton had a single, three RBIs and two runs.
The Eagles also stole nine bases in the contest, Card with three swipes while Pickert, May and Evan Ignatowski had two each.
Kade Ozog went 2-for-5 with a double, two RBIs and a run and Tanner Allen had two RBIs for Poland, which had only seven hits but took advantage of nine walks and three Eagle errors.
Lyme 4, Brookfield 0: The Goutremout brothers led the way as the Indians beat the Beavers and advanced to Sunday’s matchup against McGraw. Winning pitcher Derrick Goutremout threw a two-hitter with eight strikeouts and his brother Zach hit a grand slam home run to ice the game and pace the offense.
Catcher Tim Weston, Lyme’s leadoff hitter, got on base in three of his four at-bats and scored a run on a passed ball.
“We got aggressive this year, we got aggressive with our hitting,” Indians Rob Goutremout told the Watertown Daily Times. “In the past our team has taken strikes, taken strikes — we’re hitting the ball this year and that’s really the big difference. They’re aggressive everywhere, including base-running.”