2006-09-15 / Sports

Staten Island Sweeps Cyclones Under The Rug

By Elio Velez

The Brooklyn Cyclones miracle ride into the postseason of the New York Penn League divisional series ended last Sunday afternoon in a dreary 9-0 loss to their rival Staten Island Yankees.

The Cyclones went through enough excitement in the last week of the regular season just to make the playoffs. Needing a win on the final day of the regular season on September 7 against Vermont, and coupling with a loss by Aberdeen, Brooklyn clinched the wild card with a 4-3, 12 inning marathon win.

But against Staten Island, the New York Penn League McNamara Division champions, Brooklyn couldn't pull of another comeback. The Yankees short season A club, played like their major league first place counterparts as they swept the best of three league divisional series.

Staten Island advanced to the New York Penn League Championship

The Cyclones had lost the first game at Keyspan Park 5-2 last Saturday night and fared no better when they visited Richmond County Bank Ballpark.

Yankee starting pitcher Tim Norton whitewashed the Cyclones in Game 2 at Staten Island with a virtuoso performance. He carried a no hitter into the seventh inning until finally Cyclones DH Dan Murphy knocked a clean single to rightfield on Norton's 95th pitch of the day.

Staten Island, which had a fearsome lineup overpowered losing pitcher Todd Privett in the third inning. After breezing through the first two frames, he allowed six hits, which included an RB singles by Seth Fortenberry to make it 1-0.

The most damaging was Mitch Hilligoss single to leftfield, which plated 2RBI but a fielding error by surehanded and likely team MVP leftfielder Dustin Martin allowed Wilmer Pino to score to make it 4-0.

The end blow in the inning was when Yankees slugger Kyle Larsen knocked Privett's first pitch fastball for a solo homer that blew the game wide open.

Any chances of a comeback deflated after the towering shot and the six run inning. Manager George Greer, who in his first year led the team to the playoffs after losing seven consecutive games at the beginning and middle of the season, gave credit to the opposition.

"He (Privett) lost command and since he did that, you're going to give up runs to a good team and he did," Greer said.

"You got to tip their hat off to them. Norton pitched great. We fell behind and he was throwing well."

The Cyclones finished the regular season with a record of 41-35 and entered the postseason for the fourth time in the six years the franchise has played. Of Dustin Martin led the team in average, RBI and hits this season and was a NYPL All-Star. Pitchers Erik Brown and Tobi Stoner were also all-stars who excelled in the starting rotation this season.

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