One week has now passed since Mohonasen baseball celebrated their first sectional title since 2009. Their 2 to 0 win over Scotia was backed behind the dominant pitching performance from ace Ryan Lanaro, who will also be tomorrows sub-regional starter for Mohonasen.
You would figure it is difficult enough to prepare for teams within your own section let alone teams from other sections. This is the crossroad Ryan Lanaro is at now when it comes to preparing for the 19-4 Section III champion Whitesboro, who may I add defeated section III powerhouse Jamesville DeWitt 4 to 3 in 8 innings to get here. And as Whitesboro comes off their win on Monday, Mohonasen has been sitting around waiting since Lanaro struck out Scotia’s Sarnowski to end the game a week ago. And once tomorrow comes you can make that eight days off for the Mighty Warriors, but this doesn’t seem to concern tomorrows starter and last Wednesdays hero.
“Honestly the rest makes me feel great, having the week off definitely let me build my stamina and strength back” Lanaro said to me about the week off. The “strength” he is referring to is his calf, which cramped on him starting in the 5th inning of last weeks title game. He said to me that he has not felt any pain in it since that day after they won, which is a sigh of relief to the Warriors and fans.
Along with his stamina building up, Lanaro added that “..I think our team will come out hot because we want it so bad.” Last time I was told something similar to this the team scored 29 runs in their first two sectional games, lets see what this prophecy brings.
However, Lanaro is well aware he needs to leave last week behind him with the opportunity to be state champions in reach, “To be completely honest the Scotia game was great but I have to move past it” he told me. Adding, “In reality it does not mean anything anymore and I have to focus on this game because nothing else matters.” Sorry to all you Yankee (or in this case Cardinals) fans, but I see the fire in Lanaro that John Lackey and Jake Peavy had with the Red Sox during their 2013 World Series run. Refusing to come out, being able to truly put past games behind him, not to mention the sheer dominance he is bringing; the kid is now “John Peavy” to me.
But how exactly is Mohonasen preparing for a team they have never seen nor have been able to scout locally? It is not exactly easy, but just like anything, it can be done. “Our coaches scouted a bit but watching one game is not enough” Lanaro told me. Also saying that, “It is hard to figure out a game plan but coach Bird has a ton of experience so I have trust in him to call the right pitches and he has trust in me shake him off and throw what I feel is working best.”
Experience will pay dividends for the team as they sit four wins away from Mohonasens first state title. Every player on the team has experience in win or go home games, so the pressure (if they even feel any) is nothing new to them. They have the Little League titles, they have the Babe Ruth titles, and now most recently a high school sectional title. One more item is left to cross off the bucket list of each of the seventeen players on the team: the New York state Class A state championship. Now enter Jimmy V’s “survive and advance” mode.
Just to reiterate, Mohonasen (12-8 Section II) sends Ryan Lanaro (2-0, 2.14 postseason ERA) to the mound to face Whitesboro (19-4 Section III) at Plumeri Sports Complex at the college of St.Rose at 4 pm tomorrow. The winner will move on to face the champion of section X Franklin Academy on Saturday at 2 pm (at same location if Mohonasen wins or at Onondaga Community College if Whitesboro wins).
I said it all the time on my own blog and I have to carry it onto here for my alma mater, why not us?