The 2nd-seeded Cortland Purple Tigers were crowned Section III Class A champions after beating Auburn (#4 seed) with a score of 9-1.
The sectional final game was played at Onondaga Community College.
According to Cortland head coach Ben Albright, this is Cortland's second sectional title. Their last title was won during the 2013 season (also on Memorial Day).
““I've been with this group since they’ve been little guys playing Little League,” added coach Albright.
When asked about how it felt to win the sectional title, Max Gambitta said, “It's awesome. It's a great feeling. I can't even explain it. We just knew we had to play our game and play it slow. The energy was there, the fans were there. It was like a perfect storm for us.”
“I knew we had it in us all year (to win the sectional title),” added Tyler Blake. “We knew what we had to do going (into Monday's game). We just dominated.”
Things started off well for Cortland, as they led 7-0 at the bottom of the fifth inning.
Auburn would go on to score their only run of the game at the top of the sixth.
The Tigers then scored two additional runs at the bottom of the sixth to put themselves out of range to win the sectional title.
Kooper Knabe pitched a complete game, and threw a total of 5 strikeouts. Knabe only allowed two hits.
“I just had to work on a few things,” said Knabe. “Today, it all came together. We have to keep going.”
Cortland’s offense was led by Max Gambitta (1 run, 2 hits & 1 RBI), Tyler Blake (2 runs, 2 hits & 1 RBI), Caden Congdon (1 hit & 2 RBI’s), Ethan Hay (1 hit & 1 RBI), Andrew Partigianoni (1 run & 2 hits), Caden Albright (3 runs & 2 hits), Scott Hourigan (1 run, 2 hits & 2 RBI’s), and Christopher Yang (1 run & 1 hit).
Auburn was led by Kevin Dolan (1 run & 1 hit), Jayden DeAngelis (1 RBI), Mac Maher (1 hit), Jason Irwin (1 strikeout thrown), Cooper Polcovich (1 strikeout thrown), and Myles McBride (3 strikeouts thrown).
During the game, Caden Albright also hit an inside the park homerun.
“I saw the ball go by (the outfielder), turned on the jets and ran," said Caden Albright.
According to Caden, his father and coach Ben Albright told him that his grandfather (Bob Albright) who watched all of the games he was able to “would be proud”. Caden's grandfather(coach Albright’s father) died of a heart attack last year.
Here is a score breakdown of the sectional final game:
Up next, Cortland will play in the sub-regional round of the state tournament against Averill Park (Section II champions) this Thursday (June 2nd). The game is scheduled to begin at 6pm at Onondaga Community College.
“We just have to stay focused and keep working hard in practice,” said Max Gambitta. “If we play our game, I think we'll play great.”
The winner of the sub-regional game will play against Section X winner Massena in the regional round of the state tournament.
Here are some photos and a video of yesterday’s game between Cortland and Auburn (photos provided by Stephen Yang of The Cortland Voice):
Here is a video of Cortland’s team receiving their sectional championship title:
Here is a video of Cortland’s community in Main Street welcoming the Purple Tigers back home after their sectional championship win:
Links to Cortland's sectional quarterfinal and semifinal game articles and photos:
- Click here to read a full article of Cortland's sectional quarterfinal win vs. New Hartford.
- Click here for a photo gallery of Cortland's sectional quarterfinal win vs. New Hartford.
- Click here for a full article as well as a photo gallery of Cortland's semifinal win vs. Christian Brothers Academy (CBA).