July 28th, 2006


Post 489 refuses to fold


Bill Sinsabaugh
Cortland Post 489’s Aaron Galutz is greeted by teammates, from left, Jordan Caldwell (25), Josh Wood, Andrew Foster (18) and Sean Finucane (7) after hitting grand slam home run inThursday’s wild 25-23 victory over Windsor in the District 6 baseball tourney.

ENDWELL — With a never-say-die attitude, Cortland Post 489 kept its unbelievable run alive in District 6 American Legion Tournament play Thursday.
Post 489 overcame an early 10-5 deficit to post a 25-23 decision over Windsor Thursday at Maine-Endwell High School. Cortland (13-12) will face West Endicott Blue Post 1700 at 1 p.m. this afternoon at Johnson City High School with the winner to face Vestal Post 89 at 4 p.m. in the final two games of the losers’ bracket.
“The guys just don’t want to lose right now,” said a tired Jeff Flegler. “They just keep fighting right to the end.”
Flegler had to watch his team come-from-behind from the parking lot after being ejected in the fourth inning of the chippy contest where there were numerous warnings given to the bench and fans throughout the contest. Andrew Foster was also ejected in the seventh inning. Flegler said that he can coach today, but it believes Foster is not eligible for the 1 p.m. game.
“I have not got the official word, but I believe Andrew will have to sit out the first game, but he can play in the game against Vestal, should we advance.”
It will be a tall order against West Endicott as Cortland will face the Post 1700 ace, who is heading to the University of Connecticut this fall with a full scholarship ride. Post 489 will counter with Codi Clayton in hopes of staying alive.
“I feel good about our chances against Vestal, because I think they are short on available pitching like us,’ Flegler said. “We just need to get by the first game and then I really think we could make the finals against a very tough Johnson City team.”
Windsor used a six-run fourth inning to take a 10-5 lead after Cortland jumped in front 5-4 through two innings, Post 489 scored those five runs on just two hits, but drew seven walks and had one hit batsman. Windsor plated its six runs on seven hits (six singles, one double), one hit batter and two Cortland errors.
Post 489 exploded on the second Windsor pitcher, who entered in the second inning, but scoring 10 runs in the fourth inning to regain a 15-10 lead. Dustan DiIorio (2-for-3, six runs scored) led off the inning by getting hit by a pitch. Tim Fulton (3-for-5) followed with a single and an intentional walk to Sean Finucane loaded the bases. DiIorio scored when a grounder by Josh Wood was misplayed and the bases remained loaded. A walk to Foster forced in another run before Aaron Galutz belted a grand-slam homer to clear the bases and put Post 489 in front 11-10. After a one-out single by John Sinsabaugh, Krause became the third Post 571 pitcher of the day. Codi Clayton greeted Krause with a single before DiIorio drove in Sinsabaugh with a single. A walk to Fulton set the table for a Finucane sacrifice fly and a two-run single by Foster for the five-run cushion.
Windsor chased starting pitcher Stephen Wright in the top of the fifth by scoring seven times for a 17-15 advantage. Four hits, two walks and one hit batter surrendered by Wright and reliever Wood were costly. Fulton came on with two outs and got the final out of the inning.
Cortland got one run back in the bottom of the fifth before scoring three times in the sixth to claim a 19-15 lead. Wood, Foster and Caldwell each delivered RBI doubles in the sixth.
After Windsor tallied three times in the top of the inning to go ahead 20-19, Post 489 posted two more runs in the seventh as Briggs came on to pitch for Windsor. Finucane smashed a one-out triple and Anthony Pitts drew a two-out walk. Galutz ripped a two-run double for his fifth and sixth RBI of the game as Cortland now led by one.
Post 489 got some big insurance runs in the bottom of the eighth. Three errors, one walk and an RBI double by Finucane gave Cortland a 25-20 cushion.
Fulton would pitch well until running out of gas in the ninth. Windsor chased Fulton after a walk, single and two-run triple. Jason Hogan came on a surrendered on RBI single, which pulled Windsor to within 25-23 before fanning the next two batters. After another single got two runners on base, Hogan got the final Windsor batter to ground out and end the game.
“Stephen Wright gave us all he had on the mound, but both teams kept finding ways to score runs,” Flegler said. “Tim Fulton really pitched the best for us and allowed us to really get the lead back for the final time. Jason Hogan came on in the ninth and closed the door for us.”
It was not a low-scoring day in any of the other District 6 Tournament games Thursday. In the championship bracket, Johnson City powered past Vestal 18-8 in a battle of the only two unbeaten teams while West Endicott Blue edged Endicott 15-13 to eliminate Post 82 from the tournament. Johnson City will meet the survivor of today’s two games for the title Saturday at 1 p.m.



Second car should make Clark’s Busch life easier

After one very hectic week off, NASCAR Busch East Series driver Jeremy Clark, and fellow Cortland competitor Brent Cross, will return to action Saturday night. The seventh stop on the 2006 calendar is actually the closest the two local drivers are to home as Adirondack International Speedway (New Bremen) hosts The Edge Hotel 150.
It has been a busy break for Clark and the entire Douglas Motorsports team, which made a run to North Carolina to pick-up their second car from Andy Santerre and returned to their Cortland shop to prep the Drake Oil/Hartley’s Auto Service Monte Carlo for this weekend.
Last week, I chronicled how the other car was involved in a wreck at New Hampshire International Speedway in the last series race and needs a lot of repair work to still be done.
After many long hours, the second car is ready to go and, with three weeks until the next race, August 19 in Waterford, Ct., Clark hopes to have his original car ready as well.
“We hope to take both cars back to New Hampshire for the September 16 Busch East race,” he said. “Even after the wreck, the other car was very fast. I would like to have that car ready and the one I drive this week as a back-up.
“Again, I can’t thank Andy Santerre enough for selling us this car that Sean Caisse drove before he joined the Santerre Race team.”
With two cars now in-house, Douglas Motorsports will have one car for the shorter tracks and one for bigger tracks like New Hampshire and Dover. Clark said there is still the possibility of getting a third car before the 2007 season.