Vikings Prepare For First Trip To World Series In 19 Years

CONTACT: Jeff Foley (518) 629-8085 or (518) 373-1262

FOR RELEASE: Immediate, Tuesday, May 15, 2001 Image of Men's Baseball Team

This weekend, Hudson Valley Community College's baseball team is headed to the NJCAA Division III World Series for the first time since 1982. Sporting a 32-8 record, Hudson Valley, the Region III champions, will face Massachusetts's Quinsigamond Community College (32-12), the Region XXI champions, in the opening game of this year's World Series. The two teams kick off the double-elimination tournament at 9 a.m. on Saturday, May 19. All games will be played at Dwyer Stadium in Batavia, N.Y.

Due to construction at Hudson Valley, the Vikings will practice at Troy's Geer Field this week. The team practices from 3:30 to 5 p.m. today, 4:30 to 5:45 p.m. Wednesday and from 4:30 to 5:45 p.m. Thursday. The Vikings leave for the World Series at 8 a.m. Friday.

Hudson Valley, led by head coach Tom Reinisch of Troy, qualified for the World Series by coasting through the NJCAA Division III Region III double-elimination tournament May 11-13 at Murnane Field in Utica. In the opening game, the Vikings defeated Columbia-Greene Community College, 12-5, on the strength of Justin Beach's (Columbia) eighth-inning three-run triple, which gave Hudson Valley an 8-5 lead. It was Chris Cooper's (Shenendehowa) sixth-inning grand slam that propelled Hudson Valley to a 10-2 victory against Broome Community College in game two. And in the championship game, which Hudson Valley won, 7-4, again against Columbia-Greene, Bobby Krogh (Troy) was all guts on the mound, recording eight strikeouts and giving up no earned runs in a complete-game effort.

"It's unbelievable to know we've come this far," said Krogh, who picked up his sixth and most significant victory of the season. "We definitely play as a team."

Fifteen of the 21 players on Hudson Valley's roster hail from Section II high schools. Two members of the team – Silvestre Castro (Norman Thomas) and Nick Borgia (Scotia) – earned all-star status this year. Castro was named a First Team All-Region III infielder; Borgia was named a Second Team All-Region III pitcher.

Castro, a 5-foot-7, 145-pound freshman who primarily plays second base, leads the Vikings with a .409 batting average, a .496 on-base percentage, 60 runs scored, nine doubles, 10 triples and 14 stolen bases. He also has contributed 38 RBI. Borgia, a sophomore right-hander, is 5-1 with one save and a 2.15 ERA. He has recorded 50 strikeouts in 54 innings pitched.

Krogh may be Hudson Valley's most versatile player. A first-baseman and pitcher, he's posted a 6-1 record with three saves and a 2.02 ERA while batting .374. Krogh has struck out a team-high 61 hitters in 49 innings pitched. The freshman lefthander also has contributed a team-high 46 RBI. He has six doubles, eight triples, four home runs, and he has scored 32 times.

"You've got to know how to win," Reinisch said. "Baseball's like a roller coaster, with highs and lows. When you get into the lows, you've got to get out of it and know you'll be OK. These guys always think they can win."

As a team, Hudson Valley is batting .307 with a .407 on-base percentage. The Vikings have a combined 3.07 ERA. The Vikings have lost just one of their last 16 games.

     "We just take it one game at a time," Castro said. "Every player's dream is to go to the World Series, and it's coming true for us."

NJCAA Division III World Series Schedule

GAME 1 – 9 a.m. Saturday, May 19
Hudson Valley Community College (32-8) vs. Quinsigamond Community College, Mass. (32-12)

GAME 2 – noon, Saturday, May 19
Eastfield College, Texas (37-12) vs. Dutchess Community College (29-16)

GAME 3 – 3 p.m., Saturday, May 19
Montgomery College, Md. (28-28) vs. Dawson Community College, Mont. (33-14)

GAME 4 – 7 p.m., Saturday, May 19
Columbus State Community College, Ohio (46-19) vs. Gloucester County College, N.J. (42-7)

GAME 5 – 9 a.m., Sunday, May 20
Loser of game 1 vs. loser of game 2

GAME 6 – noon, Sunday, May 20
Loser of game 3 vs. loser of game 4

GAME 7 – 3 p.m., Sunday, May 20
Winner of game 1 vs. winner of game 2

GAME 8 – 7 p.m., Sunday, May 20
Winner of game 3 vs. winner of game 4

GAME 9 – noon, Monday, May 21
Loser of game 7 vs. winner of game 6

GAME 10 – 3 p.m., Monday, May 21
Loser of game 8 vs. winner of game 5

GAME 11 – 7 p.m., Monday, May 21
Winner of game 7 vs. winner of game 8

GAME 12 – 7 p.m., Tuesday, May 22
Winner of game 9 vs. winner of game 10

GAME 13 – 7 p.m., Wednesday, May 23
Winner of game 12 vs. loser of game 11

*CHAMPIONSHIP GAME  - 7 p.m., Thursday, May 24
Winner of game 11 vs. winner of game 13

*If necessary, a second championship game will be played at 7 p.m. on Friday, May 25.

Hudson Valley Community College, located in Troy, offers more than 50 degree and certificate programs in four academic divisions; Business; Engineering and Industrial Technologies; Health Sciences; and Liberal Arts and Sciences. One of 30 community colleges in the State University of New York system, Hudson Valley has an enrollment of more than 9,000 students each year, and is known as a leader in distance learning initiatives and worker retraining.