2003-05-30 / Sports

Beach Channel Eliminates Far Rockaway

By Elio Velez
Beach Channel Eliminates Far Rockaway By Elio Velez


Catcher Dana Butera (left) and Pitcher Jodi Vitale discuss the pitch selection.Catcher Dana Butera (left) and Pitcher Jodi Vitale discuss the pitch selection.

If there are two teams in the city that know each other very well in any sport, it is Far Rockaway and Beach Channel. Besides proximity, they both play in the same division and for the girls’ softball teams, it is common to face each other a few games a season. So when Beach Channel defeated Far Rockaway 12-2 in the PSAL B softball playoffs on Wednesday, May 28 in 5 innings, it was the fourth time that they had faced each other. Beach Channel defeated Far Rockaway in the playoffs last year and once again, the Dolphins sent Far Rockaway home

Beach Channel (16-0 PSAL B) won with a balanced hitting attack with four players accounting for 2 RBI each and pitcher Jodi Vitale shutting down the Seahorses after allowing 2 runs in the first 2 innings of the ballgame. Beach Channel placed a 5 spot in the second inning to help them get to the second round to play against the winner of George Washington/Bronx High School of Science. That game will take place on Friday at 3:30 p.m. Beach Channel for the chance to play in the Great Lawn in Central Park for the third round on Monday.

Beach Channel has gone undefeated for the second year in a row to this point but this year’s version has played some tough games against Far Rockaway and Hillcrest. Dolphins coach Robert Attonito believes that his team went through a few ups and downs that he didn’t see from his team last year. "We were down to Hillcrest 5-0 in the second inning before we won. We went through a little bit of adversity that we didn’t have last year. They (Far Rockaway) played us tough the last two games."

For Far Rockaway (9-6 PSAL B), the season may be over but their playoff season had begun the day before with a win over HS Health Professions, 15-5 at Far Rockaway High school. The matchup was an out of bracket playoff game, with the 30th ranked Seahorses winning over 36th ranked Professions to enter the next round. The contention raised by Coach Philip Stern was where Far Rockaway was seeded in the playoffs, noting that if his team had won in the first round, they would have to face Beach Channel again. Stern raised the point that Far Rockaway should have faced off against the other teams in the city and not had to play against the Dolphins.


Beach Channel head coach Robert Attonito watches as centerfielder Linda Colon takes a lead off third base.Beach Channel head coach Robert Attonito watches as centerfielder Linda Colon takes a lead off third base.

"This happened two years in a row. Our team doesn’t see some one else. I don’t understand the PSAL’s infinite wisdom", said Coach Stern. Calls made to the PSAL for comment about Far Rockaway’s playoff seeding was not returned.

Dolphins coach Robert Attonito sympathizes with Stern on the issue of playoff seeding. "I hate this playing four times and it’s not fair to them because they’re a better a team. They may get to the second round and this way, it’s not fair for them."

Stern’s belief on the playoff seeding may have been a valid one since Hillcrest, who finished ahead of the Seahorses with a 9-5 record, was seeded #22. Far Rockaway was defeated twice by Hillcrest but those games were close and the Seahorses defeated Hillcrest 27-4 in their final matchup in the regular season. Hillcrest was eliminated by #43 Morris in the first round but that result is of little consolation for Stern now that his team is eliminated.

Notes:


Far Rockaway pitcher Crystal Torres delivers the pitch against HS Health Professions.Far Rockaway pitcher Crystal Torres delivers the pitch against HS Health Professions.

The Beach Channel boys’ baseball team will have played their first round PSAL B playoff game against EBC/ Bushwick on Thursday, May 29 with the winner facing off against Randolph/Art&Design in the second round. Far Rockaway finished the season at 7-9 but was bumped from the playoffs to make room for Art And Design at 7-8 and LaGuardia 6-10. Those two teams gathered the last two-playoff spots due to the high level of competition in the Manhattan divisions.


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