North Collins claims Section VI Class D crown

OBSERVER Photo by Scott Kindberg With Coach Scott Gill doing the honors, the North Collins baseball team poses for a selfie following its 11-1 win over Ellicottville in the Section VI Class D championship game at Diethrick Park in Jamestown.

JAMESTOWN — Upon the completion of the Section VI Class D championship baseball game late Saturday afternoon, family and friends of the North Collins baseball team made their way to the Diethrick Park infield.

It was picture time.

Happily, Coach Scott Gill found his way to each of his players and posed with them and the sectional title plaque.

When asked a few minutes later what the 11-1 six-inning victory over Ellicottville meant, Gill admitted he felt like crying.

“This was bigger than the game,” he said. “I’ve known these kids since they were 5, 6, 7 years old. … We’ve talked about this for 10 years and now it’s a reality and I couldn’t be happier.”

North Collins' Derek Ebersole delivers to the plate during Saturday's Section VI Class D championship game against Ellicottville at Diethrick Park in Jamestown.

The emotions quickly switched from sentimental to euphoric when Gill talked about Derek Ebersole.

The right-hander tossed a complete-game two-hitter and helped his own cause with three hits, including a double, and three RBIs. Matthew Sweet added a triple and a double and drove in two runs; Scott Armbruster collected a two-run single; and Zander Miller and Austin Kehr both had a run-scoring base hit.

North Collins (11-6), the No. 2 seed, recorded all the runs it needed early, scoring two in the first and five in the second, and it ended the game early with four more in the bottom of the sixth. Fittingly, the deciding run scored on Ebersole’s single.

The lone run for fifth-seeded Ellicottville (7-13) came in the sixth when Hunter Smith reached on an error and later scored when Emmett Jacobson-Coolridge was hit by a pitch. Christian Swalcy had a fifth-inning single and Braylon Wyatt added a single in the sixth for Ellicottville’s only hits.

North Collins will now meet either Avoca-Prattsburgh or Northstar Christian of Section V in the Far West Regional at 1 p.m. this Saturday at Dwyer Stadium in Batavia.

North Collins' Matt Sweet celebrates after the Eagles' victory over Ellicottville in the Section VI Class D championship game at Diethrick Park in Jamestown.

But before Gill and his crew could think about their next game, he took them out to right field at the ballpark on Jamestown’s east side and, together, they posed for a selfie.

Gill was holding the cellphone.

The players were holding their blue sectional championship patches.

“It’s about relationships and having a strong bond,” Gill said. “This team is very close. I’m honored to coach them.”

He’ll have at least one more chance to do so.

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See complete story in Monday’s OBSERVER


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