The Starting Five

Archive for May, 2011

Call it ‘The Nightmare’

by on May.25, 2011, under Prep Baseball, Prep Sports, Uncategorized

There was a great Class A state semifinal game going on at McCurdy Field in Frederick on Tuesday night for six innings between Williamsport and defending champion St. Michaels.
Williamsport had led 2-1 through five innings before St. Michaels tied it at 2-all in the top of the sixth.
The Wildcats’ Brendon Colliflower and the Saints’ Kyle McKelvey were locked in a tie and it appeared Williamsport might take a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the sixth when Zach Lucas sent a long bomb to right-centerfield.
But it was flagged down by Casey Joseph, a long shot that would have been a homer in any other park.
Maybe that was the out that deflated the Wildcats.
The top of the seventh inning suddenly became an absolute nightmare for the Wildcats. (continue reading…)

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On to the semis

by on May.20, 2011, under Prep Baseball, Prep Sports

Wow!
Often you see that expression on the faces of athletes during a telecast.
Today, it was on the faces of many who were at the Williamsport-Catoctin baseball game, the Maryland Class 1A West Region title at stake.
And I’ll admit it myself, I had reservations that Williamsport could do it simply because of the guy the Wildcats were going to face.
During the regular season the two teams had split, and Catoctin was using its ace R.J. Smith. As expected, most favored Catoctin to come thru with Smith on the hill.
But they go out and play the game and there are times when you just don’t know what is going to happen.
Williamsport jolted Catoctin 13-0 in 4 1/2 innings … that was all that was needed to gain a spot in the Maryland state semis next Tuesday against defending state champion St. Michaels.
It was quite a performance by the Wildcats, who have won 9 in a row.
They’ll need the same type of game against St. Michaels.
Can they make it 10?

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No. 1 is not always the best

by on May.16, 2011, under Prep Baseball, Prep Sports

Two cases on Monday that being a No. 1 seed doesn’t always mean you are the best — Clear Spring made sure on one of them.
The Blazers upset Mountain Ridge 6-1 in the Maryland Class 1A quarterfinals on Monday.
In 2A West, Middletown walloped No. 1 seed Rockville, 14-6, and I mention that game because Middletown now comes to town Wednesday to play at North Hagerstown.
The Hubs looked very good on Monday in their 12-2 win over Liberty. Ben Bushong had a very good pitching performance and the Hubs hit the cover off the ball. If they continue to get the combined ingredients they got on Monday, there’s all the chance in the world they can defend their Class 2A title.
Clear Spring, meanwhile, now goes to Catoctin on Wednesday.
I’m guessing Blazers coach Mark Shives went with starting pitcher Adam Mellott against Mountain Ridge Monday on a hunch. It worked out. Wonder what will be up his sleeve on Wednesday.
Williamsport rolled past Hancock 12-4 and will be at home Wednesday against Northern Garrett in a 1A West matchup.

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Stunning, Shocking

by on May.13, 2011, under Prep Baseball, Prep Sports

There were a few comments on telephone lines as the word got around …. no way!, you’re kidding me! and anything else.
Word was getting out on the Smithsburg-Hancock 1A baseball game in the playoffs Friday night.
Hancock had shocked Smithsburg 11-10 in 8 innings.
Yes, that’s right … Hancock in a stunner over Smithsburg.
Me, and not one other person outside of Hancock would have expected that to happen … Just be precise about the judgement.
And now, Hancock gets to come and play at No. 2-seed Williamsport on Monday.
That, as one coach said later Friday night, is why they play the game.
For all the baseball I have seen here, there or anywhere in official competition, that’s one of the biggest upsets I’ve seen.
But of course, kudos go out to Hancock for victory.

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Postseason baseball

by on May.13, 2011, under Prep Baseball, Prep Sports

Wednesday, May 11

Let’s take a look at the Maryland postseason baseball draw which came out Wednesday morning.

CLASS 1A West
In the upper half of the bracket Mountain Ridge received the No. 1 seed. boonsboro will play at Clear Spring in the first round and the winner goes to Mountain Ridge on Monday. Mountain Ridge is 15-2. The other matchups are Fort Hill at Allegany and Manchester Valley at Catoctin.
In the lower half Williamsport (14-4) gained the No. 2-seed and will play on Monday against the Smithsburg-at-Hancock winner from Friday. The other matchup includes Brunswick at Southern Garrett on Friday with the winner going to Northern Garrett on Monday.
I’m going to pick straight up with the top 2 seeds — Williamsport will meet Mountain Ridge in the West Region final.

CLASS 2A West
North Hagerstown edged its way into a fourth-seed with a 12-6 record and received a first-round bye. The Hubs will wait until Monday to play, awaiting Friday’s winner between South Carroll and Liberty. Middletown plays Wheaton and that winner goes to top-seeded Rockville.
Can the Hubs get through to the West final? They’ll have to be at their best to do so, most likely starting with Liberty.
To be honest, I’m just not really sure how good Rockville, with its 15-3 record, really is. But I do think the Hubs have the opportunity to make a repeat appearance in the state tournament.

CLASS 3A West
South Hagerstown has been reeling in the second half of the season, but everyone has a 0-0 record right now and the Rebels have a chance to redeem themselves, starting Friday at home against Tuscarora. It is not totally out of the question that the Rebels can not only beat Tuscarora, but on the road at Linganore on Monday if they win Friday. They beat Tuscarora 5-1 to open the season and if not for a batch of errors, should have been Linganore late in the year before losing 9-7. chance at a region final? No more than 50-50.

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Maryland’s coaching search slows

by on May.09, 2011, under College Basketball, College Sports

I was really hoping my last week of classes ever would start out with an announcement regarding Maryland’s coaching vacancy.

That didn’t happen.

When Gary Williams stepped down as Maryland’s basketball coach last Thursday, I was shocked. I wasn’t mad or anything negative, but just upset in general because he’s been Maryland’s basketball coach my entire life. He was hired in 1989, the same year I was born, so literally, my entire life he’s been the figurehead of the Terps’ basketball program. Most people have read the stories that have been published about Williams’ career in College Park. How he took his alma mater from its darkest days to cutting the nets down on April 1, 2002 in Atlanta after he led Maryland to its first national championship.

Everyone had positive remarks about Williams and his 33 years — 22 at Maryland — coaching college basketball. Even Duke coach Mike Krz..um..yz..I think..ewski. Yeah, Krzyzewski, that’s it. Despite Coach K being the absolute last person I wanted to hear from about Williams’ retirement because he coaches at a school I unconditionally loathe due to their preppy, rich students, ugly cheerleaders and a fan base that only roots for basketball because their all bandwagon-ers, except the 21 percent of the fan base that actually lives in North Carolina or went to Duke. I digress. But Coach K said that Williams’ retirement is a huge loss to college basketball and I (gulp) couldn’t agree more. (continue reading…)

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MVAL baseball shapes up

by on May.05, 2011, under Prep Baseball, Prep Sports

North Hagerstown defeated Catoctin 5-4 on Thursday to help shape up the standings in the MVAL Antietam Conference.
The victory gave the Hubs a 9-3 record and dropped Catoctin to 8-3. Idle Williamsport, which has completed its conference slate, is 11-3.
The final outcome of the MVAL is squarely on the shoulders of the Hubs. They host Brunswick Friday afternoon. Then on Tuesday, they’ll play South at the Stadium. Two victories and the Hubs will tie Williamsport for the co-championship.
Andrew Yacyk, for the second game in a row, delivered a game-winner. In the bottom of the sixth inning his sacrifice fly scored Charles Cvijanovich to break a 4-4 tie and Aaron Jones then came on the for save in the seventh inning.

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Down to the nitty gritty

by on May.04, 2011, under Prep Baseball, Prep Sports

It looks as though some of Wednesday’s scheduled baseball games might be played. At least notices of postponements have not come through yet in Washington County despite Tuesday’s overnight rains.
We still have a race in th MVAL Antietam after Catoctin beat Boonsboro on Tuesday. The Cougars are 8-2 and they are slated to play at North Hagerstown this afternoon. The Hubs — this is their chance — are 8-3 in the MVAL and they have a huge measure of revenge on their mind having lost to Catoctin earlier in the year 23-5.
Williamsport is 10-3 in the Antietam and the Wildcats play at Smithsburg this afternoon.
Catoctin still has two makeups with South Hagerstown, but it is questionable whether those will be done. Both schools have full schedules coming up. It is quite possible the Antietam could be decided by a percentage count. We’ll see after today shakes down.

Games for schools counting toward a seed in the tournament run through Tuesday, May 10. That’s’ the cutoff date. The tournament draw is next Wednesday and the final play date for the regular season is May 12.

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Local coverage

by on May.02, 2011, under Miscellaneous

I have a few things to put together for the upcoming days and in beginning to do so, one thing stuck out at me ….

Take a look at Monday’s Area Roundup online or in print ….. It is HUGE and I mean HUGE …. Don’t anyone ever say we don’t cover Washington County and other areas from the Tri-State that report information ….. And besides the area roundup, the staffed games.

Dan Kauffman pulled the last twinge of hair out of the left side of his head tonight putting all this together …. from the phone calls and emails everyone took in the office.

HUGE !!

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Recapping Baltimore’s Draft

by on May.02, 2011, under Uncategorized

Is it too soon to make an Osama Bin Laden joke? Ah, screw it. No one liked that guy anyway.

I checked out the blog this morning before class and it’s been more lifeless than the leader of Al-Queda. If we let it go any longer without postings, it might grow a disgusting beard and hide out in the mountains for a decade.

But aside from the biggest news story of the year, this past weekend hosted the three-day spectacle we all know as the NFL draft. I love the NFL draft for several reasons: 1) it is in primetime 2) it is live 3) everyone boos Roger Goodell 4) I know who some of the players are in the seventh round and 5) it allows me to watch 15 hours of football-related material in the spring. Though, I do not like how ESPN shows the draft pick on the phone with the team before Goodell announces the pick. That always gets annoying, but luckily for me, I did not have to endure that for the Ravens’ pick. The suspense was manually created with the trade that did not go through (thanks a lot Jerry Angelo you #&%@$!). (continue reading…)

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