At 8:06 Friday night and darkness fast approaching, the umpiring crew called together Jamestown coach Dave Roehmholdt and Williamsville North coach Jerry Scarcella for a conference.
As the men chatted, players on both teams knew what the conversation was about, so they did their best lobbying effort to keep their Erie County Interscholastic Conference Division 1 baseball game going.
But with visibility becoming increasingly difficult, the decision was made to suspend the game after eight innings with the score tied, 6-6. When it will be resumed is still to be determined.
Jamestown third baseman Jeff Miller applies the tag on Williamsville North’s Mike Scelaskwicz during Friday’s ECIC Division 1 baseball game. Scelaskwicz was called safe and ended up scoring. See additional photos at cu.post-journal.com.
P-J photo by Scott Kindberg
''We would have had to play a whole other inning,'' Roehmholdt said. ''By the time we would have come up, it would have been pitch black.''
In fairness, the pending darkness would never have been an issue if either team had taken care of business during regulation.
For the Red Raiders, they committed four errors that led to five unearned runs, but it was a spectacular throw from second baseman Cameron Haberberger in shallow right field to catcher Boe Brooks that cut down Williamsville North's go-ahead run in the top of the eighth inning.
''We get glimpses of good things, but we have to limit the plays that put us in situations where we have to come back,'' Roehmholdt said.
For the Spartans, they had leads of 1-0, 2-0, 2-1, 5-4 and 6-4, but couldn't put the game away. In fact, the visitors held a two-run lead heading into the bottom seventh inning, but Alex Guzman's two-run single to center with one out tied the game at 6-6.
Guzman finished with three RBIs as did teammate Kyle Emerson, whose three-run double in the fifth inning - he also had a single in the seventh - tied the game, 4-4.
''Kyle and Alex are (batting fourth and fifth in lineup) for a reason,'' Roehmholdt said. ''The tough thing for us lately is putting people in front of them (so they can drive them in).''
On this evening, though, Haberberger was on base four times, had two hits and scored three runs, while Adam Westley, the starting pitcher, was on base three times, had two hits and scored twice.
Westley pitched seven innings and scattered seven hits, including two apiece to Mike Scelaskwicz and Zack Thomas. Nick Tobias worked the eighth inning and was the beneficiary of a brilliant play by Haberberger to preserve the tie.
Randy Brown was walked to lead off the inning and was sacrificed to second by Mike Keubler, but Boe, the catcher, threw the ball wide of first for an error. Haberberger, backing up the play, retrieved the ball and threw a strike to Boe, who made a nice scoop and slapped the tag on Brown. Tobias then retired the next two batters to end the inning.
''(Haberberger) has been spectacular the last couple of games,'' Roehmholdt said. ''For him to come up with that one is big. Boe made a nice scoop and tag, so they both did a nice job.''
When Jamestown was retired in order by Williamsville North's P.J. Mistretta - the third Spartans pitcher - in the bottom of the eighth, the game was suspended.