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Harrison Meets Cornwall for State Final Four Berth

FISHKILL, N.Y. – The Harrison baseball team will return to a familiar site Tuesday for the New York State Public High School Athletic Association Class A baseball regional final against Cornwall.

The Huskies are making a second appearance at Dutchess Stadium, where they won the Section 1 Class A championship last week in walk-off fashion over Byram Hills. Harrison was pleased to learn that its opponent was the Section 9 champion. Instead of a three-hour bus ride to face a Section 4 team, Harrison, in essence, has a home game.

“We feel comfortable there, especially after winning the sectional championship,” senior Max Bruckner said. “We feel at home as opposed to going to Binghamton and having to take a long bus ride.”

The first pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m. The winner advances to the state final four against the Section 8 (Nassau County)-Section 11 (Suffolk County) victor at 10 a.m. Saturday at Union-Endicott High School in Endicott, N.Y.

Harrison coach Marco DiRuocco and assistant coach Jay Ciraco have not allowed their team to forget what the ultimate goal is.

“We have not been able to look back on winning sectionals, because we’ve been working hard and having tough practices,” Bruckner said. “We’ve been talking about winning a state championship, but we are not getting ahead of ourselves. We have to play the game one inning at a time.”

Harrison has reached this point combining excellent pitching, solid defense and timely hitting. Michael Forgione and Bruckner have been outstanding during the postseason.

“We haven’t done anything different than what we did during the regular season,” said the Iona College-bound Bruckner. “We’re throwing strikes, going after the hitters and keeping them off balance. We have a good defense and we’ve been hitting. It’s easy when your team scores runs for you.”

Cornwall advanced with a win over Maine-Endwell (Section 4). Bruckner said  DiRuocco told the Harrison players that the Dragons are fast and their best players are their first baseman and shortstop.

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