When it rose to no. 11 in the state Class AA rankings, the West Genesee baseball team felt quite good – at least until it went a modest 3-2 in the stretch of five games in five days from May 5 to 9.
But the rainout of the Wildcats’ May 10 game at Fayetteville-Manlius gave the Wildcats a chance to rest, and it seemed to work because it came back to the diamond last week and registered back-to-back shutouts over two other prime contenders.
The fun started last Monday afternoon, when WG jumped all over Cicero-North Syracuse early and, with strong pitching from Seamus Barry and Evan Reichel, beat the Northstars 4-0.
These same two teams had met April 21 at Gillette Field, with Collin BeVard’s two-run home run in the seventh inning the difference as WG prevailed, 7-5.
Here, though, the Wildcats wouldn’t need late heroics. It knocked out C-NS starting pitcher Jesse Farabee with four runs in the bottom of the first inning, two of them driven home on Matt VanAllen’s double as BeVard and Anthony Carrodeagus also had RBIs.
That was more than enough for pitcher Seamus Barry. Keeping C-NS off balance all afternoon, the Wildcats hurler went 5 2/3 innings, holding the Northstars to three hits while strikng out five, before Evan Reichel took over in the sixth and went the rest of the way for the save.
Two days later, another big game loomed, WG trying to beat defending state Class AA champion Baldwinsville for the second time this spring – and doing so behind a tremendous pitching performance by Bailey Gauthier, who blanked the Bees in yet another 4-0 decision.
Just as when it beat B’ville 4-1 back on April 11, the Wildcats avoided facing highly-touted Bees pitching ace Scott Blewett, instead dealing with left-hander Brett DeLola, and getting to him early.