Featured Story
07/05/17 2:33pm
BEVERLEA WALZ PHOTO Bucks lefty Patrick Clyne, sporting an 0.88 ERA, in action July 1 against the Southampton Breakers at Fiske Field.

BEVERLEA WALZ PHOTO Bucks lefty Patrick Clyne, sporting an 0.88 ERA, in action July 1 against the Southampton Breakers at Fiske Field.

The Shelter Island Bucks welcomed the Sag Harbor Whalers back to Fiske Field on the morning of Independence Day looking for a little revenge against its Hampton Collegiate Baseball League rival.

After dropping a home double-header over the weekend and being just 1-4 on the season versus the last place Whalers (8-18), the Bucks showed why they are contenders for the HCBL championship this year. (more…)

Featured Story
06/08/16 10:00am
BEVERLEA WALZ PHOTO Heading for shelter on the Island. A brief weather delay at Tuesday’s Bucks game at Fiske Field didn’t bother the home team. The Islanders went on to win 4-3 over the Southampton Breakers.

BEVERLEA WALZ PHOTO Heading for shelter on the Island. A brief weather delay at Tuesday’s Hamptons Collegiate Baseball League game at Fiske Field didn’t bother the home team. The Bucks went on to win 4-3 over the Southampton Breakers.

After a short delay for a thunderstorm moving over the Island, the Shelter Island Bucks showed some late lighting of their own, winning its first game of the season with a walk-off base hit over the Southampton Breakers Tuesday at Fiske Field. (more…)

06/03/13 8:26am

TARA SLEDJESKI PHOTO | The Bucks pitched well against the Sag Harbor Whalers but still dropped their season opener on the road.

The Shelter Island Bucks were in good shape to win their first game of the 2013 Hampton Collegiate Baseball League season Sunday evening thanks to strong pitching and timely hitting. Well, at least they were until one bad inning lost the Bucks the game.

The Island team went into the bottom of the seventh inning holding onto a 3-0 lead when the Whalers’ bats came alive. The home team loaded the bases due to an infield error and a bunt before a single scored the Whalers’ first run to make it a 3-1 game. With the bases still loaded, a walk to the next batter forced in a run. A fielder’s choice on a sparkling play by Bucks’ first baseman Conner Wilson, of Missouri State University, allowed the game to be knotted at three. The ball hit to Wilson took a wild hop but he stuck with it to get the force at first while a run scored.

The Whalers really opened the game up after the next batter, right fielder Scott Hagan, hit a ball to second that was bobbled. The error allowed two more runs to score with Hagan standing on second on a ball that never left the infield. The inning ended with the Whalers up 5-3 and the Bucks never came back. Tacking on two more runs in the bottom of the eighth, the Whalers won by a final score of 7-4.

After the game, Bucks’ Coach Johnny Hernandez put a positive spin on the contest. “Just getting out there and playing after three days of long practice, just to get them out there and get the pitchers throwing, hitters swinging the bat, it was good, ” Coach Hernandez said.

A couple of Bucks players also had positives to take away from the loss. Catcher Joe Burns from St. John’s University was happy about how the team is starting to come together. “Great group of guys,” he said. “We are all coming closer together and we’re out here playing baseball, so it’s nice.”

Pitcher Mike Wallace from Fairfield University also focused on the positives. “I thought it was a good game, obviously there was one inning that kind of got away from us but I think all in all we were on the same page and for the most part we pitched well, we played the field well and we hit well,” Wallace said. “It was a great atmosphere, great to be out here and we’re definitely looking forward to the rest of the season.”

It was an unseasonably chilly and windy evening in Sag Harbor and quite different from the extreme heat the team practiced in a couple of days earlier. But Coach Hernandez did not think that made a big difference. “Maybe the weather affected them a little bit, it’s kind of windy but a lot of these guys are from the northeast so they should be used to this,” he said.

The Bucks take the field going for their first win of the season today at 5 p.m. in their home opener at Fiske Field.

05/31/13 12:42pm

TARA SLEDJESKI PHOTO | Two Vegas boys meeting at third. University Nevada-Las Vegas infielder Justin Jones taking a throw as Cody Howard, a fellow Runnin’ Rebel, advances. Both players, on the Bucks’ roster this summer, were at the team’s first practice Thursday.

Summer hit Shelter Island instantly Thursday with temperatures rising into the 90’s, just in time for the first practice of Bucks baseball.

At least one new player on the team representing the Island in the Hampton Collegiate Baseball League had a bit of a shock. Outfielder Cody Howard’s  first impression of Shelter Island was a sticky one. “It’s crazy.” Mr. Howard, who plays for the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, said about the humidity. “I definitely sweated a little bit more out here than I did at home. It’s a completely different world out here compared to Vegas.”

General Manager Cori Cass is excited for the summer of 2013 following a 21-19 inaugural season that resulted in a league title. However, disappointment still lingers over the team’s first round playoff loss. This season, Mr. Cass’ goal  is to win the HCBL Championship. But he understands there are obstacles in the way. “It’s a very competitive league so it will be tough,” he said.

Mr. Howard and  many of his teammates had their real first taste of life on Shelter Island at Thursday’s practice. Some got onto the Island for the first time and headed straight to Fiske Field. On an unbearably hot day, the work out was a typical baseball practice featuring a variety of traditional drills.  Rookie Coach Johnny Hernandez oversaw his team’s first efforts by getting involved, hitting and pitching to his players.

Hernandez was pleased with what he saw following the first practice. “I feel pretty good about the team,” he said. “They’re my type of guys. They look like they’ve got some speed and can put the ball in play. They look like a bunch of grinders out there. The pitchers threw pretty well. I really like what we have.”

Asked what he thought would be the team’s strong spots following his first look, Hernandez was quick to put emphasis on pitching. “Anytime you’re playing baseball it’s going to be pitching and defense,” he said. But he also noted the importance of hitting, especially on a team with speed.

“Like I said, we have some runners so we will be able to hit and run and lay some bunts down, steal a bunch of bases so I think we will be pretty strong,” he added.

Just like Mr.Cass, Hernandez also has high expectations “My goal is to win it,” Mr. Hernandez said referring to the league.

The players are pumped to win the league also, but a few have other goals. Mr. Howard said his main goal was to improve. “Just basically get some more at bats and get better,” Mr. Howard said. “Get stronger, get faster and get better every day, basically.”

The environment is not the only thing Mr. Howard will have to get used to while playing for the Bucks this summer. “It’s different with a wood bat,” he said. “The field is definitely way different than I’ve been playing on all year, it’s not really a stadium, it’s just the teams and maybe a couple fans, so it’ll be different, it’ll be fun.”

The Bucks begin their season this Sunday, June 2  on the road against the Sag Harbor Whalers. Their first home game is Monday, June 3 against the Center Moriches Battlecats at 5 p.m. at Fiske Field

Part of the experience of the league for the players is saying with host families. Currently, eight host families are still needed for this summer. Anyone interested,  please contact Mr. Cass at  516-361-4399, or email him at [email protected]