Bryce Grathwohl is no stranger to coming through in big spots.
With the season on the line Saturday in the Class B Southeast Regional final against Rondout Valley in Saugerties, he came up huge once again in Mattituck’s 5-2 win.
Grathwohl’s two-run single drove in Jon Lisowy and Ryan McCaffrey to break a scoreless tie in the top of the sixth and help Mattituck (19-6) advance to Friday’s state Final Four in Binghamton.
McCaffrey’s single earlier in the inning was the first hit of the game for Mattituck.
Grathwohl threw six scoreless innings and hit the winning home run in a 19-inning game earlier this season that helped the Tuckers clinch a piece of the Suffolk VIII title. He also had a complete-game victory to help Mattituck win the Class B title against Center Moriches.
The Tuckers hung tight thanks to the arm of Grathwohl, who went 6 1⁄3 innings, allowed six hits and one walk and struck out eight.
His single might not have meant as much had he not been able to escape a bases-loaded, one out jam in the bottom of the fifth.
“We had just gotten a bad call against us on the basepaths and we really needed him to bear down,” Mattituck coach Steve DeCaro said. “And that’s what he did. The team needed him to be the man and he did it.”
Grathwohl got a strikeout and a ground ball back to him to get out of trouble.
Lisowy broke the game open with a single in the top of the seventh that put Mattituck ahead 5-1.
The Tuckers advance to play Livonia at Binghamton on Friday.
— Gene Morris