Assistant Sports Editor
HOOSICK, N.Y. -- For the first four innings, Cambridge Central School starter Shaeden Mosso gave Hoosick Falls a dose of the generic brand of adversity coaches like to cite in an anything-but-easy victory. Several called-third strikes and baffling curveballs left the Panthers shaking their heads.
"The Mosso kid pitched a good game. He had us off-balance and our guys were frustrated, but they kept their heads and overcame a lot of adversity," said Hoosick coach Mike Lilac.
And when Lilac talked about adversity Tuesday, he didn't mean the often petty, everyday variety.
Against the Indians, the Panthers, staring down a bases-loaded jam in the fifth, saw one of their teammates taken off the field in an ambulance only to escape the jam -- and a two-run deficit -- by scoring six runs in the bottom of the sixth to pick up a 6-4 win in Wasaren League baseball action.
In that fraught fifth inning, a freak bounce off the plate caught Hoosick Falls catcher Logan Brogue, sliding to the side to block the pitch, in the neck. But after making the play to save a run and tossing the errant ball to the man covering home, Brogue unnaturally went down to the turf.
The startling scene led to a roughly 30-minute delay in the game. Hoosick Falls (10-5 overall, 5-4 league) starting pitcher Josh Brogue said his battery mate appeared to be "talking and joking" as he left the field.
Josh Brogue went on to get a strikeout and force a foul ball that was caught for the final out to end the frame.
"Josh got two big outs right there," Lilac said. "We talked about minimizing damage -- bases loaded, one out, with their best player up and that was probably the play of the game right there, striking him out.
"Then [back-up catcher] Hodges makes a nice catch against the fence. That was big. Big, big, big. Who knows how many they could've gotten right there."
Despite exiting after six innings down 2-0, Brogue earned the win thanks to the Panthers' rally. He scattered six hits, struck out eight and walked five. Billy Pine came on to finish the game in the seventh.
"I was a little shook up because he's my cousin. I was shook up the way he went down [but] we had to keep coming back," Brogue said.
Mosso yielded just four hits against seven strikeouts, six walks -- two intentional -- and three hit batters in the losing effort for Cambridge (3-10, 2-7).
Caleb Rowland's infield hit scored Matt Parmenter to give the Indians a 1-0 lead in the fourth. They added another in the sixth on David Reedy's line-drive double to deep right-center that scored Clayton Harrington from first.
But the Panthers tied it in the bottom half as Pine's single to center field -- his first at-bat after getting hit and walking twice -- plated Cody Gaines. Randy Tutunjian added a stand-up triple later in the frame to score two more and give the hosts a 6-2 edge.
"We played a hell of a game. Shaeden was throwing strikes. Our defense was playing great defense, we were making contact, just playing good baseball," Cambridge coach Jason Waite said. "That sixth inning, the breaks went against us. A couple errors -- you can't give base-runners any extra outs."
The two squads meet again today to settle the season series.