They never really had any doubt.
Even as No. 1 West Babylon, the Conference III champion, trailed host No. 1 Bayport-Blue Point, the Conference IV champion, by four runs in Game 1 of the best-of-three Suffolk Class A baseball championship series on Saturday.
West Babylon scored five unanswered runs in its 6-5, eight-inning victory and is one win away from claiming the Suffolk Class A title.
The Eagles (21-4) scored three runs in the sixth inning, then added a run and tied Bayport-Blue Point (24-2) in the seventh.
Ricky Fasitta singled up the middle to drive in Sean McGuire from second base in the top of the eighth, and Jace Alvino retired the next three Phantoms for the save.
“My teammates did a great job of getting me to that point,” Fasitta said. “I was just thinking about hitting the ball hard somewhere through a hole.”
Fasitta finished 3-for-5 with a run and the winning RBI. McGuire hit a two-out, two-run single with the bases loaded in the top of the sixth to make the score 5-4.
After Brandon Hancock’s sacrifice fly tied the score in the seventh, McGuire hit another two-out single in the top of the eighth and stole second to set up Fasitta.
“I was getting Ricky in the box,” McGuire said. “That was my only goal: to get on for Ricky.”
McGuire said first-base coach Shaun Kaminski told him to take the base if he liked the opportunity. McGuire said he loved it.
“I knew in that spot, we had the top of the order up, we had to get in scoring position and make it happen,” Kaminski said. “[Bayport-Blue Point has] a good lineup too, so we didn’t want to go too far into extra innings. We had to get one there.”
McGuire said there weren’t any nerves in the dugout. Fasitta said West Babylon isn’t out of a game until it’s over.
“The bigger the situation, the bigger these guys step up to the plate,” West Babylon coach Victor Manzella said.
Manzella said he planned to rest Alvino, the Eagles’ top pitcher, after he threw four days earlier in the Conference III championship game.
Manzella said Alvino is the likely starter for Game 2, which West Babylon will host Monday at 10 a.m.
“We’re all so excited,” McGuire said. “We know we can do this. From Day One. we said we were going to do this.”