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Rob Potter | Democrat

Umpire Dan Clark prepares to make the call as Spackenkill’s Nick Contelmo, center, steps on home plate while trying to avoid the tag of Sullivan West catcher Jeremy DeGori in the top of the fourth inning of Tuesday afternoon’s game at the Lions’ Field in Jeffersonville. Contelmo was out on the play.

Home runs carry Spackenkill to victory over Sullivan West

By Rob Potter
JEFFERSONVILLE — May 28, 2010 — Fans who attended Tuesday afternoon’s Section IX Class B quarterfinal baseball game between the Spackenkill Spartans and host Sullivan West Bulldogs at the Lions’ Field in Jeffersonville were treated to three home runs in the contest.
Spackenkill clean-up batter Mark Lotus belted two of those home runs to lead his team to an 8-3 victory over the Bulldogs.
Spackenkill (11-10), the fifth-seed in the Class B tournament, advanced to yesterday’s semifinals to meet top-seeded Marlboro. Fourth-seeded SW finished its season with a 14-6 record.
Lotus gave the Spartans the lead in the top of the first inning when he hit a three-run homer over the right field fence.
Spackenkill extended its lead to 5-0 in the top of the third. With the bases loaded and two outs, Brian Usavich singled to left field to bring home Steve Gugumuck and Dan Speranza.
The Bulldogs got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the third. After the first two batters were retired by Spackenkill pitcher Quinn Horvath, Mark Tesseyman walked and Jeremy DeGori singled to put two runners on base.
The next batter, Austin Sauer, blasted a high fastball from Quinn Horvath over the right field fence for a three-run homer, which cut the Spartans’ lead to 5-3.
Spackenkill got one of those runs back in the top of the fourth. Quinn Horvath led off the frame with single, stole second base and moved to third base on a sacrifice bunt by Marc Horvath. Nick Contelmo then singled down the right field line to allow Quinn Horvath to cross home plate.
With two outs in the top of the sixth, Lotus hit his second homer, a two-run shot, to give the Spartans an 8-6 advantage.
Contelmo took over for Quinn Horvath on the mound to start the bottom of the sixth. Contelmo walked Ryan Alsdorf with two outs, but got the next batter to fly out to end the inning.
Contelmo then set down the Bulldogs in order in the bottom of the seventh.
“I thought that taking the lead early helped us and gave us some confidence,” Spackenkill Coach Don Neise said. “Mark Lotus had a big game for us. He has been hitting well lately.
“Anything can happen on any given day,” Neise added. “Those home runs were big.”
SW Coach Kurt Scheibe Jr. noted that the Spartans had several clutch hits in the game.
“I think five of their six hits were with two outs or an 0 and 2 count on the batter,” he said. “They had those two home runs and we made some errors.”
Scheibe noted that the Bulldogs’ starting pitcher, Alsdorf, didn’t seem to be himself.
“He never seemed to get comfortable on the mound,” Scheibe commented. “I don’t know if it was their batters or the heat, but something was off.”
Scheibe was also unhappy about losing DeGori, who left the game following the sixth inning after being shaken up in a collision with Contelmo at home plate in the top of the fourth.
“It’s a shame that we lost our starting catcher and number four batter on a play like that in a game like this,” Scheibe said.
SW will be losing two seniors – Sauer and Tesseyman – to graduation next month.
“They were our leaders this season,” Scheibe said.

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