NRW 2 Dansville 1
Talk about “heartbreaking”…that perfectly describes the end of the Dansville Mustangs high school baseball campaign here in 2016 as the red & black had a stellar effort on the hill by senior right-hander Anthony Kanaval, but could only muster one run in support. The homestanding Cougars would plate the game-winner in the bottom of the 7th as the runner beat the potential “double-play” ball allowing the winning run to cross the plate in a 2-1 walk-off in Wayne County on Friday (May 20) afternoon. Yes, a long bus ride….but a longer one home.
Dansville head coach Tom Hober noted, “our kids played a great game today. Anthony pitched his heart out & we couldn’t get the hits we needed. We played great defense, made some key plays when we needed to. But that’s the game of baseball, you get some tough breaks.” The game was a scoreless deadlock until the bottom of the 5th when North Rose-Woolcott broke through & plated the first run of the game. The Mustangs knotted things up in the top of the 6th as Hunter Stone worked out a walk. Tommy Wise came on to run for him. The next pitch was in the dirt & moved the runner into scoring position at second. Derek Wampole then hit a seeing-eye shot in the hole which was back handed by the shortstop & then thrown away, allowing the tying run to score. It looked like the Mustangs might have a chance in extra innings after the green & black loaded the bases with one out. The next hitter hit a bouncer to short, the flip went to second to start the “potential” double-play…..but the runner beat the relay to first as the game-winning run crossed the plate & NRW moved on with a hard-fought 2-1 victory. Anthony Kanaval pitched well enough to win, working 6 2/3 strong innings yielding just 1 earned run while striking out 8 along the way & walking 4. Derek Wampole had the lone run. Coach Hober reflected back on the season…” I want to tell you, these kids battled this year. Sure there were some games we felt we should have won, & there were others when we were opportunistic & took advantage of the other team’s mistakes & won. We couldn’t have asked any more of this group, they worked hard, played hard, got along with one another, & they gave it all every game….there’s nothing more I can ask as a coach.”