Softball: Raiders seeking revenge today
Last spring, Greenwich put a stunning end to Mechanicville’s bid for a fifth straight Section II title by beating the Lady Raiders in the semifinals.
Those two teams meet today for the Class C title, one of five Section II championship games, split between two sites.
The Greenwich vs. Mechanicville game is one of three at 5 p.m. at Clifton Common, where the Class AA (Bethlehem vs. Guilderland) and B (Chatham vs. Tamarac) finals are also set.
Big 10 champion Troy plays South Glens Falls for the Class A title, and Fort Ann meets Germantown in the Class D final, both games set for 5 p.m. at Moreau Rec in South Glens Falls.
Both Mechanicville, the top seed, and No. 2 seed Greenwich have turned in strong seasons after losing standout players from 2012.
“This year, we have 15 kids, and they’re all good. Up until sectionals, they’ve all contributed. They’ve all started,” said Mechanicville coach Don Areceneaux, whose teams have won five sectional titles and three state championships since he began coaching the varsity team in 2003. “Some of them play great defense. Some are good hitters. You try to get the best of both worlds.
“We’ve got our toughest offense in the lineup, and we’ve got some kids off the bench who can hit.”
Mechanicville, 19-4, used a seven-run sixth inning to beat Duanesburg, 9-1, in the semifinals.
Greenwich is hoping history repeats itself, after the Wasaren League co-champions edged Albany Academy, 1-0, in nine innings in the semis getting all three of their hits in the ninth.
“After the game, I told the girls we had 20 wins, and we had 20 wins at this point last year,” said Greenwich coach Greg McGuirk. “Mechanicville is a very good team, and we’ll have to hit better in the final.”
Guilderland, the No. 3 seed, is in the Class AA final for the second straight year after knocking off second-seeded Colonie, 4-1, in the semis.
The 13-7 Lady Dutch, who lost to Shenendehowa in last year’s championship game, split both games with Bethlehem during the Suburban Council season.
Bethlehem, the No. 5 seed, took out fourth-seeded Niskayuna and No. 1 seed Shenendehowa to get to the final.
Troy is hoping to continue the success the school’s other teams have had in the first year of play at Class A.
“We’ve got a tough act to follow,” said coach George Rafferty, referring to the state title won by the girls’ basketball team and the boys’ soccer team’s sectional championship.
Rafferty’s 19-2 team has a tall order, playing South Glens Falls on its home field. The Lady Bulldogs have won three straight Class A titles, and 13 since 1997.
Troy will start eighth-grader Hunter Levesque in the pitching circle.