DIX HILLS, New York, May 29
BY: Andrew Wroblewski
The hits kept coming for the Half Hollow Hills West baseball team last week, but not in a good way. Instead of base hits, the team saw several hits coming down upon its playoff life.
The Colts fell to No. 8 West Islip (19-4) on Wednesday 2-1 in the winner’s bracket final of the Class AA Suffolk County playoffs. In the loss, Hills West also lost its number two pitcher in junior Jon Faraci who will be sidelined with an injury for the rest of the season.
“We decided to play our worst game in a long time at the wrong time,” Tom Migliozzi, head coach for Hills West, said. “There were base-running mistakes, we let good pitches go by, and after Mike Marino came in for [Faraci] we had a lack of clutch hitting to get us back into the game.”
The loss marked the first time since May 1 that the Colts were defeated and sent them to the loser’s bracket final for a game between either Ward Melville or Commack, which was played after press time.
“We were in the driver’s seat and now our back is against the wall,” Migliozzi said last week. “The road to where you want to go becomes a lot longer now.”
That road became so much longer due to West Islip pitcher, James Kory, who pitched a three-hitter last Wednesday while striking out the Colts 6 times. Junior centerfielder Owen McMenamy had one of the few hits for Hills West when he ripped a double to right-center to give the Colts a scoring opportunity. However, the Colts were silenced as Kory ended the threat shortly after.
“We had our shot and we blew it,” Migliozzi said of the game.
Depending on whether the Colts were successful on Tuesday, they would have faced West Islip again on Wednesday in a do-or-die situation.
However, with the Colts ace, junior Aaron Glickstein pitching in Tuesday’s game – and with Faraci done for the season – Migliozzi would have to trust his number three pitcher with the Colts’ lives. With West Islip presumably sending Kory to the mound once again for the game, the matchup could spell disaster for the Colts.
“The whole goal if you get to West Islip again is to get to the second game,” Migliozzi said. “The first game is going to be a lot more difficult than the second so we’ll just have to take it inning by inning.”
If the Colts did make it to and survive Wednesday’s matchup they would have to face West Islip yet again, at home, since were already defeated by them last week. The Suffolk County championship game will be played today at 4 p.m.
Originally published: Long Islander News: Half Hollow Hills (Thursday, May 29, 2014; A19)