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Harrison Bats Come Alive as Baseball Playoffs Near

HARRISON, N.Y. – Harrison baseball coach Marco DiRuocco knew coming into this season that pitching and defense would be his team’s strong point. But with an 11-4 victory against Port Chester on Wednesday, he saw something that he has waited for all season.

The bats finally woke up, and the offense seems to have sparked at just the right time, with just one game left in the regular season.

“It’s big on the whole spirit of the team,” DiRuocco said. “It’s big on the mentality. It’s big on the emotional side of things, and it’s big on the spirit of the team to keep it going.”

The Huskies (15-4) have been a streaky offensive team this season. Harrison has put up at least eight runs in consecutive games three times this season, but also has a five-game stretch and a four-game stretch in which the Huskies produced four runs or fewer per game.

DiRuocco said offensive consistency has been the “missing link throughout the season.” Team captain and catcher Alex Beckett agreed.

“We’re a pretty streaky team right now,” Beckett said. “We get hot streaks. We get cold streaks hitting. As of right now, we’re entering the playoffs with a hot streak.”

Harrison is likely to earn a high seed in the sectional playoffs after such a successful regular season, and with it will come expectations. But DiRuocco is prepared for that.

“I always give them a sectional speech, a sectional talk,” DiRuocco said. “(I say) ‘Listen, fellas. It’s 0-0 now. Records are out the window. Averages are out the window. What you did or didn’t do during the season is all out the window. It’s a clean start. Fresh.’ And I tell them that right after we end our official season.”

Beckett knows that upsets can happen in a one-and-done format, but he has a very specific way of dealing with the expectations and the pressure.

“We just think about, don’t let any team come in and just surprise us,” Beckett said. “Treat it like playing Fox Lane, one of the better teams around.”

Harrison ends its regular season with a rematch Friday at Port Chester.

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