In just a matter of days, the fortunes of the Jamesville-DeWitt baseball team did a complete reversal -- and it allowed the Red Rams to stay in the Section III Class A playoffs for a while.
Less than a week after blowing a five-run lead to CBA on May 21, the Red Rams staged its own late comeback -- from a five-run deficit, no less -- and beat Chittenango 7-6 in eight innings in last Tuesday's opening-round classic.
Chittenango came in as a no. 10 seed, bent on avenging a loss to J-D the week before. And from the time Pat McGinnis slapped a two-run home run over the right-field fence in the first inning, the Bears appeared to be in total control.
Not only did Chittenango score in each of the first five innings to build a 6-1 lead, it was also getting a gem from its pitching ace, Jon Stevens, who held J-D to just one hit.
Everything changed, though, when the rain and wind picked up in the sixth inning. Four outs from defeat, burned by both the CBA and a perfect game thrown at them by Westhill's Jack Ganley on May 22, J-D would rise again.
It started when, with two out in the bottom of the sixth, Anthony Dunn singled home Tom Driscoll, who led off the inning with a double. Then an error put runners on first and second, and Josh Paduano's single scored Dunn, making it 6-3.
Mick Cariseo came up and, with runners on second and third, hit a slow grounder that bounced up the middle past the Chittenango infielders. Both runners came home, making it 6-5. After Jack Susman got hit by Stevens, Mike Gianni doubled home Cariseo with the tying run, though Susman got tagged out trying to score.
Now at 6-6, John Sheedy, pitching in relief of Justin Marzella, stranded two Bears runners in both the seventh and eighth innings, and J-D had a chance to win.