When you’re playing Mamaroneck
High’s baseball team, you’d better pitch, and you’d
And most times that still won’t be enough.
It was Thursday as Scarsdale surprised the Tigers,
7-5, behind the pitching of righty Colin Markel and
three home runs — a first-inning solo shot by DH
Henry Hirsch, a three-run homer in the third by
David Wheeler, and what turned out to be the
winning margin, a three-run blast by Ethan
Shenberg in the fifth.
How big was this?
Well, Mamaroneck not only was the No. 1-ranked
team in the state and the two-time defending state
Class A champ; and not only was on a 12-game
winning streak since losing a pair to open the
season in Florida.
The Tigers had gone 45 games (44-0-1) without a
league loss, since a 2006 loss to New Rochelle, and
had only lost three games to New York state teams
in four seasons.
So it was understandable that the postgame
celebration, after Markel struck out DH Richard
Dropkin, representing the tying run, to end the
game, was a bit wild.
"It’s kind of like taking down No. 1," said Shenberg,
who had not hit a home run this season until he
powered a low curve from righty Greg Dennysenko
over the left-center-field fence to put the Raiders up
7-2 in the fifth. "You look at the state rankings,
they’re No. 1. You look at the section rankings,
they’re No. 1. You look at who won states the last
two years, it’s them. You look at who beats us every
year, it’s them. So when you can finally take them
down in a game like this, you can’t really put it into
"Probably the biggest win I’ve ever been a part of in
The Tigers aren’t the same team that won the two
state titles. They graduated all but two starters, and
one of those, star catcher Mike Rosenfeld, needed
what likely was season-ending elbow surgery before
the season began. The other returning starter, Sam
Gruppo, was injured Thursday when he took a
wicked bad hop off the left side of his face, causing
a welt above the eye, and what coach Mike
Chiapparelli said was a concussion. Gruppo, who
was still dizzy and helped to the locker room after
the game, was to have further tests and X-rays last
There were some other odd moments, too, such as
Mamaroneck failing to get down a squeeze bunt in
the fourth, having a runner thrown out on a perfect
relay while tagging up from second on a long fly to
center; and having a Scarsdale run taken off the
board in the top of the seventh on an appeal that the
runner left third too early.
Mamaroneck didn’t go away, getting strong relief
from Sam Wallach after the Shenberg homer, and
getting a two-run homer from Matt Mezansky to cut
it to 7-5 in the sixth. So the Tigers remain a force,
especially with bats in hand.
"I think we’re still in great shape," Chiapparelli said.
"We’re 12-3. I think we’re a pretty good team.
"Give credit to their pitcher. That’s a great job. He
wanted it bad."
He sure did.
"You know that you’ve got to keep your composure,"