Railroaders defeat state champions

DSC_0051Whitehall head baseball coach Jason Hoagland didn’t know if Christian Poczobut was going to be able to pitch this season.
The junior suffered a shoulder injury that required surgery and his ability to pitch this season was in doubt.
On Friday, not only did Poczobut pitch, but he helped lead Whitehall to its first win over Fort Ann in recent memory.
Clinging to a two-run lead in the sixth inning, Poczobut relieved starter Tyler Thomas and escaped a bases loaded jam without allowing Fort Ann to tie the game. Whitehall then broke through for five runs in the bottom of half of the inning and held for a 9-3 win over the Class D defending state champions and a team that has only lost twice since the beginning of last season.
“For Christian to come in with the bases loaded and only give up the one run, he did a heck of job. I didn’t even know if he could pitch this year but he came to me and said he could,” Jason Hoagland said.
“We’ve been right with them (Fort Ann) for the last three years. Not that we necessarily should have beat them but we could have,” Jason Hoagland said. “To be honest the kids came into the game thinking they could win.
“I’m not going to lie, that was a big win.”
Whitehall jumped on the board in the first inning on Tyler Thomas’ sacrifice fly. The game remained 1-0 until the fourth inning. Tyler Thomas led off the inning with a double to right and Poczobut drove him to make it 2-0. After Danny St. Clair walked Chad Amerio tripled to right to make it 4-0.
Fort Ann fought back in the sixth inning, scoring two runs and loading the bases before Poczobut came in to pitch in relief. Fort Ann cut the lead to one before Poczobut recorded a strikeout for the final out of the inning.
“We were coasting along but you knew Fort Ann would battle back,” Jason Hoagland said.
In the top half of the inning, Whitehall loaded the bases and Amerio and Derek Thomas each picked up an RBI by drawing walks and Julian Barber broke the game open with a two-out, three-run double.
Whitehall improved to 5-0 on Monday with a 13-0 win over Fort Edward.
Derek Thomas struck out 11 and allowed only one hit in the game.
Justin Hoagland hit a two-run homerun during a six-run first inning, Chad Amerio stayed hot at the dish with a 3 for 3 night and Julian Barber recorded three hits.
As a team Whitehall recorded 15 hits.
Last Tuesday, Whitehall jumped out to a six run lead on its way to an 8-4 win over Warrensburg.
Justin Hoagland drove in two runs and scored two runs during a 3 for 4 performance at the plate. He also picked up the win on the mound.
With the recent wins, Whitehall has the inside track at the Adirondack League Championship but have a big game against Hartford on Friday before hosting Argyle and Corinth next week.

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