PSAL Class A softball title game suspended
Tottenville athletic director Jim Munson was sitting in the stands, continuously glancing at his watch as the sun began to set around the softball field at St. John’s University Wednesday.
The PSAL Class A title game between top-seeded Tottenville and No. 2 Susan Wagner was originally scheduled to start at 6:30 p.m., but the first pitch wasn’t thrown until 7:09 p.m. because the Class B final, which started 15 minutes late, didn’t end until 6:30 p.m.
Awards ceremonies, plus infield practice pushed the start time even closer to sundown.
“I kept checking my watch. At 7:47 (p.m.), I said we’re not getting it in. At 7:47 I said we better push,” Munson said. “I was hoping no warmup pitches, no throws to first, get the ball back to the pitcher and go.”
The game wouldn’t continue much longer. Tottenville was leading 3-1 in the top of the fifth inning over Wagner when the umpires, along with coaches Marco Altieri of Wagner, and Cathy Morano of Tottenville all agreed to suspend the game due to darkness at 8:01 p.m.
A consensus was reached by PSAL commissioner Donald Douglas, softball commissioners Sylvia Makresia, Dawn Gugliaro and both coaches that was the game will tentatively resume Thursday at approximately 3 p.m.
Douglas said he was waiting for confirmation from St. John’s University administrators if they can resume the game at the Red Storm Field. The PSAL has a permit to use the field on Thursday as a rain date option.
“We’re going to confirm in the morning,” Douglas said. “We want to play it in the best venue possible, which most likely will be here because of the weather forecast tomorrow.”
Douglas said both schools would be contacted as soon as possible to arrange bus transportation to St. John’s.
Wagner jumped out early, taking a 1-0 lead on Jeri Gennaro’s two-out RBI single in the second which scored Dayna Williams from second base.
Tottenville pitcher Cheryl Lopez put her team in front in the third, belting Taylor Sarcone’s 0-1 fastball over the fence in left-center field for a three-run home run.
Wednesday’s postponement due to darkness has been one of a series of events that has caused havoc for the PSAL. The softball title game was originally supposed to have been played at St. John’s Saturday before inclement weather pushed the game to Wednesday.
There were also discussions to move the last three innings to the College of Staten Island and finish the game Friday afternoon if they had received permission from the CUNY school.
Munson said that discussion ended when it was revealed rain was in the forecast for Friday and Saturday.
“The [officials] decided it was unsafe and for a championship game like this, they want to play it in optimal conditions,” Munson said. “It’s an unfortunate thing.”
Altieri had to break the news of the postponement to his players, who reacted with disappointment.
“I hate to say it is what it is, but we’ll play when they ask us to play. I can’t complain about it,” Altieri said. “It’s dark now. Ending when they end it wasn’t the worst idea. I would have hated to see it tied and then go back to the other inning.”
The Wagner coach, who led his team to the finals for their first appearance since 1989, said it could be a positive for his team to start fresh Thursday.
Altieri says the league did the best they could despite the circumstances, and his team will be ready to play.
“They were disappointed but they’re kids,” Alteri said. “No matter what time this game ended, they would be upset. If it rained, they’d be upset. I told them stay focused, get some sleep, we come back here and they’ll tell us when to play.”