‘Jacks fall in baseball regional match
PLATTSBURGH — After claiming the Section 10 Class D championship on Tuesday, the Tupper Lake baseball team’s historic season was met with heartbreak on Saturday.
The Lumberjacks’ promising run into the Class D state playoffs came to an end, as the team fell 2-0 to the Crown Point Panthers in regional playoff action at Plattsburgh High School.
With the win, the Panthers advanced to the Class D Final Four to take on Deposit/Hancock in Binghamton on Saturday. The Lumberjacks, however, ended their season with a record of 14-5 overall.
“I guess next year starts today for us, instead of next week,” Tupper Lake head coach Dan Brown said. “But we’ll be right back on top of Section 10 Class D baseball every year for the seeable future and that’s our goal.”
Crown Point’s pitcher, Noah Spaulding, proved to be the difference-maker, shutting down a Tupper Lake offense that had recorded 35 runs in their three-game playoff run. Spaulding not only prevented the Lumberjacks from scoring, but he tossed a no-hitter in the process while striking out 13 batters.
“Spaulding, he’s a great pitcher on the mound there,” Brown said. “He got the best of us obviously.”
Karter Kenniston and Luke Robillard were Tupper Lake’s only two batters that were able to reach base. Kenniston was walked twice and reached on a fielding error, while Robillard reached base after being hit by a pitch.
“I wish we could have hit the ball a little bit better,” Brown said. “It’s always tough when the other team doesn’t hit the ball past your outfielders and you give up a run on that. We came up pretty pumped today to play and it didn’t work out for us.”
Crown Point’s two runs came early in the ball game with their first run coming in the bottom of the first inning when the team scored on a two-out RBI double by Evan Carey. In the second, a Panthers baserunner was able to score on a Lumberjack’s throwing error to make the score 2-0.
Kenniston, a freshman, earned the pitching loss for Tupper Lake, but despite the loss, he still delivered a solid performance. Kenniston struck out nine Panthers batters while giving up just six hits in six innings.
While the season ended on a sore note, the future does look bright for the Lumberjacks, who have a relatively young squad.
“We have a core of five sophomores, two freshmen and two seniors out there. A couple of juniors here and there,” Brown said. “It stinks we lost today, but we know we’re going to be back here next year. It’s not the only time we are going to be playing in a state regional game.”