Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

Sports

June 13, 2013

Lakemen mark 30-year anniversary

Wilson won the state Class C-D baseball title in June of 1983

(Continued)

WILSON —

According to a copy of the original boxscore, Woodard drew a two-out, second-inning walk, then the left-handed batter Voutour smashed a monster home run to left centerfield to give Wilson a 2-0 lead. 
Voutour, today the honorable Niagara County Sheriff, said he remembers the game as if it were yesterday.
“Channel 7 came down from Buffalo and taped the whole game,” Voutour said. “Woodard, through his connections, has a copy of that tape and I’ve seen it. My home run’s on it.”
When told it was one of the longest homers ever hit by a Lakemen player, Voutour said, “I remember it was a high outside pitch. I didn’t see it (land) because I had my head down running around the bases.”
The very next frame, Okoniewski reached base on an error, Cruickshank homered to give Wilson a 4-0 lead, then Zipp singled and scored on an RBI by Scott Perry. The Redwings scored one in the bottom of the third and another in the fourth, but Okoniewski hurled one of the best games of his career and the Lakemen took home the state Class C-D title.
“We had a good core of players — no superstars. Twardoski had graduated the year before. We missed the championship by one game in 1982. I was a sophomore on that team,” Voutour said.
“Everything just clicked in 1983 and Pat was an amazing coach. It was his rookie year, so he was just 23-24 years old at the time. I guess you could call it the perfect storm — a bunch of good players, no superstars and we won it with good pitching, good defense and smart baseball.”
In his memory of the title game, Cruickshank said four years ago, “Arriving on the bus back in Wilson from the game, I remember being escorted by fire trucks with lights ablazin’ to a late night rally at the school.”

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