BINGHAMTON, N.Y. - Forgive Steve Skon and Jon McGibbon if they had amnesia and thought it was football season. Seeing a 14 next to Lindenhurst was reminiscent of that sport.
It certainly brought huge grins to see that next to runs in the third inning Saturday. Lindenhurst has received contributions from everyone all season and they put an exclamation on that in the state Class AA baseball championship with a 15-2 win over Guilderland at Binghamton University. Each starter either drove in a run or scored a run.
Lindenhurst (26-1) won its first state championship and ended the season on a 21-game winning streak.
"It felt like [football] a little bit," said McGibbon, who was drafted in the 29th round by Seattle this past week. "We had a football mentality coming in. Guys drove the ball and got it done."
Added Skon: "I never expected anything like this. You expect to grind it out and you're up 13-0."
McGibbon went 3-for-4 with a walk, two runs and two RBIs; Dan DiBlasi went 3-for-4 with a walk, four runs and two RBIs; Skon went 1-for-2 with two walks, two runs and an RBI; and Vin Valela went 2-for-3 with two RBIs. "Even the bench players got in and hit line-drive singles," Jimmy Briggs said. "It was perfect."
Tom Bammann went 5 1/3 innings and allowed one earned run, four hits and three walks with eight strikeouts.
The Bulldogs, who had 18 hits, scored four in the first by batting around after having two outs and no one on. The Bulldogs showed great patience drawing five walks in the inning. DiBlasi walked with the bases loaded for the first run and Briggs scored on a wild pitch to make it 2-0. Ryan Manning's two-run single to center made it 4-0.
"We're patient hitters," Lindenhurst coach Mike Canobbio said. "We put the take on since their pitcher was struggling."
Guilderland starter Edward Pierce was replaced by Christopher Gareau in the second inning and Lindenhurst made sure he didn't get out of it. The Bulldogs scored nine runs and had eight hits to take a 13-0 lead.
Briggs hit an RBI double, Mike Roehrig an RBI single, DiBlasi executed a perfect suicide squeeze and Alex Genao hit a two-run double to give the Bulldogs a 9-0 lead. After the second out, Valela had an RBI double, McGibbon hit a two-run double and Skon singled in a run to make it 13-0.
"We knew we were good this year," Canobbio said, "but to do this is incredible. Nobody ever thinks about 26-1. This is a tremendous group. We got contributions from every single player."
Lindenhurst advanced to the final with a 3-0 win over Valley Central in the semifinals in the morning. Lefthander Rich Vrana improved to 9-0 by throwing a four-hitter with eight strikeouts. Roehrig went 2-for-3 with a double, triple and two RBIs and Ken Gentile went 2-for-4 with a run.
"It's unbelievable," McGibbon said. "I've been playing with these guys since Little League. They're my brothers. We had a great season. We're just a complete team. We knew we had to play our best baseball. It turned out we did."