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Mills baserunner Terry Nichols dives safely back into first.  

Jeff Pexton-MHTS/PGI Photo


ballOriskany sophomore first baseman Nick Springer doubled with one out in the bottom half of the fourth inning, scoring Alex Liddy for what would be the winning run and the Redskins held on to defeat the New York Mills Marauders 1-0 in a key Center State Conference IV baseball game.

Today’s game featured two of the area’s better pitchers. Junior Zach Vennaro for NY Mills and senior, right hander Austin Smith took the mound for the home standing Skins and neither hurler disappointed, yielding just 9 combined hits on the afternoon.

Oriskany officials may want to rename the high school baseball field “Gilligan’s Island” however, as the Marauders and Redskins left a total of 16 baserunners stranded this afternoon.


Oriskany’s Austin Smith (12) deals an early strike.

New York Mills journeyman John Ross, who caught for his club this afternoon, singled in the first inning, but was unable to get past first base.

You knew early on that this one would be a low scoring affair.

ballOriskany got singles from Austin Smith and Dan Buehler in the home half of the third but Vennaro got Cody Murphy to ground into an inning ending 6-4-3 double play. 

Smith had his stuff working nicely in the top of the third, setting Brian Diskin, Griffin Bauer and Ryan Lupia down in order.

Oriskany couldn’t plate a run in the home half of the third. Vennaro’s solid stuff and an over the shoulder catch by second baseman Brandon Ross in shallow centerfield kept the Redskins off the board for the third inning in a row.

John Ross complimented his younger brother’s defensive effort by lacing a double to deep center to lead off the top of the fourth.

double play1

New York Mills shortstop Terry Nichols fires to first for a double play as Oriskany’s Dan Buehler looks back.

Zach Vennaro flied out to second base and Ryan Lupia  to first base, before Griffin Bauer drew a two out walk to put Marauders at first and second with two away.

Nick Springer then flashed some leather at first base, chasing down a foul ball off the bat of Brian Diskin and making a great catch to end the inning.

With one out in the home half of the fourth, Alex Liddy singled to left center to bring the big home crowd to life.

Nick Springer stepped in next and hammered a Vennaro offering into left centerfield, scoring Liddy easily and giving the Redskins a runner at second with one away.

Vennaro dug in yet again and got Anthony Pickard to fly out to left field and Ethan Juarez out on strikes to bring an end to the Oriskany threat.

ballMills shortstop Terry Nichols drew a leadoff walk to start the fifth inning. Freshman Mike Copperwheat was called to pinch hit for Luke Sunderland and the youngster placed a perfect SAC bunt up the third base line, advancing Nichols to second.

Austin Smith then struck out Brandon Ross and got Shawn Kula to fly out to right field, leaving Nichols stranded at second.

After a scoreless bottom half of the fifth frame, New York Mills appeared to be poised to score again in the visitor’s half of the sixth.

John Ross drew a leadoff walk, bringing the large contingent of Mills fans alive. Ross was caught stealing when Oriskany catcher Dan Buehler fired a BB to second base to cut down yet another Mills threat late in the game.


Oriskany’s Alex Liddy (9) crosses home plate as NY Mills catcher John Ross collects the late throw.

Mills would put two more baserunners in place after Ross was thrown out, but Smith got Brian Diskin to strike out on three pitches to increase the population of “Gilligan’s Island”.

ballOriskany wasn’t able to plate a run in the home half of the sixth and Smith set Mills down 1-2-3 to end a very tight contest.

Austin Smith (2-0) picked up the complete game shutout on the hill for Oriskany (4-2, 3-0), striking out 8 and walking 4. 

Zach Vennaro (2-1) suffered the loss for New York Mills (4-1, 1-1), allowing 1 run on 5 hits, striking out 2 and walking 5. 

John Ross, who is headed to Herkimer County Community College this fall to play baseball, had two hits for the Marauders.

Oriskany 1 New York Mills 0

Box Score

                   1   2   3   4   5   6   7      R   H   E

NY Mills         0   0   0   0   0   0   0      0    4   2

Oriskany        0   0   1   0   0   0   x      1    5   0


New York Mills hurler Zach Vennaro delivers a fifth inning pitch.















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