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Medina’s 1st Section VI diamond title season

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 20 June 2020 at 8:38 am

Contributed Photo – The Medina Mustangs celebrating after capturing their first Section VI baseball championship, a 7-3 win over Grover Cleveland in the 1989 Class B2 title contest. In front are Coach Larry Schrader and Mark Greene. Standing are Eric Valley, Rick Majeski, Brian Fuller, Jerry Shaffer, Kyle Jones, Ryan Wilkins, Todd Bensley, Jim Snyder, Mason Moore, Jody Sargent, Russ Beyer, Shad Froman and Charlie Leonard.

A year ago Medina trimmed rival Albion 10-6 to capture the Section VI Class B1 baseball championship. The Section VI title was the third for the Mustangs the first of which came in 1989.

That spring the Mustangs downed Grover Cleveland of Buffalo 7-3 to capture the Section VI Class B2 championship.

That victory ended a 38 year postseason title drought for Medina whose only previous sectional title was a 2-2 co-championship with Geneseo in the 1951 Section V Class A final.

Mark Greene went the distance on the mound for the Mustangs against Grover Cleveland scattering six hits with seven strikeouts in the contest played at Hamburg.

At the plate, Greene, Mason Moore, Jim Snyder, Shad Froman and Brian Fuller each banged out a pair of hits.

Leading all the way, Medina jumped out to a quick first inning lead on a two run homer by Moore which followed a single by Snyder.

Medina upped the advantage to 5-0 by scoring three times in the third inning. Greene’s second double of the day ignited that uprising as the runs came home on an error and a pair of steal plays.

Grover did break onto the scoreboard with a pair of runs in the fifth inning on back-to-back singles and a two-run error. However, Greene bore down to get out of further trouble by retiring the next three batters on a strikeout, a pop out to Moore at shortstop and another strikeout.

The Mustangs though got those two tallies right back in the home half of the frame on an RBI single by Moore and an RBI double Froman.

However, Medina’s post season run came to an end in the next round as Dunkirk defeated the Mustangs 13-8 in the Section VI Class B title contest at Pilot Field (now Salen’s Field) in Buffalo.

Top seeded Medina advanced to the B2 title contest by downing Newfane 6-2 in the quarterfinals and Fredonia 4-3 in the semifinals, both at Vets Park.

Greene hurled Medina past Newfane limiting the Panthers to three hits and striking out five.

Medina again took the lead for good in the first inning on a two-out, two-run single by Ryan Wilkins.

The Mustangs doubled the lead with two runs in the fourth inning on a wild pitch and an error.

Newfane did cut the deficit to 4-2 with two runs in the sixth but Medina got those right back in the home half of the frame on an RBI double by Russ Beyer and an RBI single by Rick Majeski.

Medina then had a very close call in the semifinals surviving a half a dozen errors to nip Fredonia 4-3.

Snyder went the distance on the mound allowing only one hit and striking to 10.

Just as was the case in the quarterfinals Medina jumped out to a quick first inning lead on a two-run single by Moore.

The Mustangs added a solo run in the second inning on a fielders choice play off the bat of Charlie Leonard.

Fredonia picked up an unearned run in the fourth but Medina got that one back in the fifth on a well executed double steal play for what proved to be the game winning run and a 4-1 lead. Moore reached on a fielders choice and Brian Fuller with a double to key the threat.

Fredonia did cut the deficit to 4-3 by scoring a pair of unearned runs in the sixth off three Medina errors.

However, Snyder bore down to get the final out with a strikeout leaving two Fredonia runners stranded on base.

Fredonia did get the leadoff batter on in the seventh via a walk but Snyder retired the next three batters in a row on grounders back to the mound to lock up the victory.

Since that 1989 title campaign, Medina has captured the Section VI Class B championship two more times in 2003 and 2019.