Blair eliminated in second round of playoffs after quality season
MAY 17, BLAZER STADIUM-
After a successful 13 win season, the Blazers ended their 2004 campaign on a low note, losing to a tough Sherwood team in a mercy-rule shortened game, by a score of 12-2. While the loss was unfortunate, it marks only the fourth time in eleven years of Blazer playoffs that a team even advanced to the second round, this following an 11-2 annihilation of Churchill on May 14.
Sherwood would be a difficult team to beat, as they defeated the Blazers 10-2 earlier in the season, and cruised by Magruder 15-0 in the first round. Despite this, the Blazers claimed an early lead before falling apart.
Senior Sam Boone pitched a perfect first inning, and the Blazer bats picked up where he left off in the home half of the opening frame. Senior Tom Foley doubled to left and Boone reached on an error before senior Kent Anderson singled home Foley for the game's first run. Junior Chris Madert later singled home Boone to give the Blazers a two run advantage after the first inning.
But unfortunately the Blazers soon lost control of the game and the lead would not last. Coach John Macdonald was not pleased in the way the team played in the final four innings. "We did everything wrong after the first inning. The momentum should have gone our way after we got the lead. I was disappointed in the way we went out," he said
Boone seemed to be a different pitcher in his second trip to the mound, as he walked five batters in the inning. He was not helped by his defense in the inning either, as junior catcher Mike Sindall botched a routine run-down play and had a passed-ball, for two of the team's three run-scoring errors of the inning. All told, there were six Warrior runs in the inning, (one resulting from a balk) despite the fact that Boone only gave up one hit in the inning.
Macdonald took the ball from Boone after this inning and replaced him with senior Jonas Wilson. Wilson also struggled, going 2.1 innings allowing six hits and four runs while senior Grant Staking finished the game.
The Blazer batters then seemed to lose all confidence after this devastating inning. Madert's single in the fourth inning and Boone's single in the fifth were the only other Blazer hits on the afternoon. The season's last play, like the season itself was bittersweet: Boone got caught in a rundown but was fortunate enough to make it from first to second base safely, but Foley was then caught and tagged in between second and third base. Because the Blazers were not able to close the 10-run gap, play was called after the fifth inning for the Blazers' ninth loss of the year.
Boone felt that Blair may have underperformed this season is sad to be leaving the team and its players. "We're a lot better than our record. We work real hard and we should have been better," he said. "It was a good group of guys and I'll miss playing with them."
Macdonald believes that with the good combination of newcomers and veterans, the team may be successful next season. "I have high hopes for next season. We have a good crop of JV players coming up. We have six of seven returning players who are hard workers so they'll be working over the summer," he said.
Zach Mellman. Zach Mellman was born on October 18, 1956 (he was held back once or twice). He has lived in Takoma Park, Maryland his entire life. He is currently a senior at Blair enrolled in honors classes. He is also a member of Blair's golf team, … More »