To Bayport-Blue Point's Jack Piekos, Gibson Award is special
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A perfect team season for Bayport-Blue Point's Jack Piekos was capped with a perfect award for the junior lefthander Wednesday night. Piekos was named the winner of the Gibson Award, presented to the most outstanding pitcher in Suffolk.
"Winning an award is a huge honor no matter what it is because it shows how well you did all season, how consistent you've been," said Piekos, who in 73 innings pitched during the regular season was 11-0, with a 0.38 ERA, 111 strikeouts and a .102 OBP. "This is more so a team celebration than it is an individual celebration."
It started with Piekos and continued all season long with fellow hurlers Chris Brewer (9-0, 1.54 ERA) and Ryan Dollop (6-0, 1.46 ERA), who were instrumental in leading BBP (27-0) to its first state title following its 5-3 win over Williamsville South.
"My team and coaches are huge," said Piekos, who went 4-0 with a 0.25 ERA in the postseason, where he pitched a no-hitter in the Suffolk Class A first-round game against Rocky Point and a one-hitter against Sayville in the winner's bracket final. "This is probably about how well our pitching staff performed, how well our defense played. Our defense never let the other team capitalize, never gave the other team extra bases."
Making it about the team and instead of him on a night when a prestigious individual award was presented is where Phantoms coach Jim Moccio believes Piekos' is deserving of such an honor.
"I think he set the tone for how our pitching staff was going to pitch this year," Moccio said. "He demands a lot out of himself and his work ethic is second to none. I think he was as effective as anyone in the county and that is why he won the award."
Piekos' ability to throw four pitches -- fastball, cutter, slider and curveball -- for strikes, by pounding the lower part of the zone, made things easier for the Phantoms' defense, which got the ground balls it needed during the season to turn the double play.
It also made things easier at the plate. Matt McKinnon said as such after the winner's bracket final victory over Sayville, calling the team "relaxed" and that it "knows it can score runs when [Piekos] pitches."
That's one of the main reasons why the Phantoms are state champs, something Moccio is still shaking his head about.
"Unbelievable, it hasn't really sunk in," Moccio said. "The state championship was exhilarating, one of the most exciting things to happen to our school. It's history and really, really special."