By MIKE LYNCH
PLATTSBURGH - The Lake Placid boys baseball team rode the strong pitching of Ryan Meyer to a 2-0 win over Chazy in the Section VII, Class D finals Friday evening at SUNY Plattsburgh.
Ryan Meyer pitched a one-hit shutout to lead Lake Placid to a 2-0 win over Chazy Friday evening in the Section VII, Class D finals at SUNY Plattsburgh.
(Enterprise photo -- Mike Lynch)
Conor Preston drove in the winning run for Lake Placid with a sixth-inning single.
(Enterprise photo -- Mike Lynch)
"It feels awesome. We haven't won one since '97," Blue Bombers coach Brian Brandes said. "We beat a good team. Chazy was well coached. Kyle Bisonette threw a hell of a game. Ryan Meyer was a little bit better today."
Lake Placid will now play Heuvelton Monday at SUNY Canton in the state regional semifinals. Heading into Friday's game, Chazy was the top seed and Lake Placid was the second seed in Section VII, Class D.
In this matchup, the difference between the teams was minimal. Lake Placid eked out this win because its pitcher had a slightly better day.
Meyer allowed only one hit in the shutout performance that saw him throw only 74 pitches. He had six strikeouts.
The only time he faced a serious threat was in the fourth inning. That inning the Eagles loaded the bases after Bisonette walked, Nathan Reynolds picked up an infield hit on a chopper that went a short distance down the third baseline and Jacob Kennedy was hit by a pitch.
But Meyer escaped without giving up any runs after Alec LaPierre hit a line drive right at first baseman R.J. Reid, who caught the ball and stepped on first base for the double play to end the inning.
The play appeared to energize the Blue Bombers as they left the field cheering.
"I was getting tired out there because of the heat but when the line drive went to our first baseman R.J., (and he) made that play, it brought me right back to life," Meyer said.
The Blue Bombers finally got on the board in the sixth inning thanks to some timely hitting and aggressive base running.
Reid, who ended the other rally, started off the inning with a single up the middle. He then stole second and third base to put himself in scoring position. Finally with two out, freshman Conor Preston singled to left field to drive him home.
"I was just hoping to make contact and just move him when I had the chance," Preston said.
Preston finished the game with two hits. He was the only batter to have more than one in the game.
Lake Placid's Chris Williams scored the final run of the game an inning later to give his team a 2-0 advantage. Williams led off the inning with a walk, stole second, then went to third when Shane McNierney reached on an error. Freshman Noah Mohr drove Williams home with a sacrifice fly to right field.
For the most part, this game flew by as both pitchers were in control. Meyer pitched ahead in the account throughout the game.
"(I was focused on) hitting the strike zone, trying to keep it low to be able to get some ground balls for my infield," Meyer said. "They hit some hard ones and our left fielder Shane McNierney played a great game, made some nice catches out there for me."
Brandes commented that Meyer was extremely efficient, pointing out that he escaped one inning with four pitches. That was key because temperatures were in the 80s on this sunny day.
"He dug deep," Brandes said. "We were hoping he'd throw about five innings and (then we'd) come back with RJ for two, (but Ryan) threw some very efficient innings."