Playoffs Are A Lock For Thunderbirds

HALF HOLLOW HILLS, New York, May 14

BY: Andrew Wroblewski

Extending their winning streak to five straight games, the Thunderbirds of High School East’s baseball team claimed an 8-6 win over the Bulls of Smithtown West (13-5) on Saturday.

The Thunderbirds have enjoyed a five-game win streak as of press time on Monday.
The Thunderbirds have enjoyed a five-game win streak as of press time on Monday.

Marc Klinger was the hero. In the sixth inning, he came on as a pinch hitter for Hills East and hit a sacrifice fly that broke a 5-5 tie. The Thunderbirds padded their lead in the seventh inning as Jordan Milo added to his productive day at the plate with a 2-run single. He finished the game 3-for-5 with 3 RBIs.

On the mound, Brandon Bonomo recorded his fifth win of the season for Hills East (13-5), which found itself in a tie with the Bulls for second place in League III as of press time on Monday.

Already a lock for the 2015 Suffolk AA playoffs, the Thunderbirds looked to continue riding its win streak in hopes of landing a premium playoff seed when the postseason begins this weekend.

The win streak began with a 10-4 win over Bay Shore (8-10) on April 29 and has continued with another victory over Bay Shore, a triumph over Copiague (1-17) and a road win against Whitman (3-15) before the most-recent win over on the road against the Bulls. During that stretch, the Thunderbirds have outscored their opponents by a combined score of 41-14.

Hills East, along with the Bulls, trailed Smithtown East (16-2) – a team which suffered its two losses this season to the Bulls and then the Thunderbirds in April.

The Thunderbirds would get another shot at the first-place holder on Tuesday as they traveled to Smithtown East in a game to be played after press time to try and secure a sixth straight win. If they did succeed, the Thunderbirds would have tied their season-high win streak and would look to extend it even further on Wednesday with the final game of the regular season against Bay Shore.

Regardless of those outcomes, however, the Thunderbirds will await their playoff seeding as the 2015 tournament is tentatively slated to kick off on Saturday. Depending on where Hills East lands, it could earn a home game; in order to keep up with the bracket, visit http://www.sectionxi.org.

Originally published: Long Islander News: Half Hollow Hills
(Thursday, May 14, 2015;  A27)

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