Sherwood scores three runs in the ninth inning to end a close pitcher's duel
BLAZER FIELD, April 19 -
The Sherwood Warriors (7-1) beat varsity baseball (3-7) in a 3-0 game, scoring the game's only three runs with three consecutive batters in the top of the ninth inning. Senior pitcher Sammy Denenberg was a superior force on the mound, but Blazer offense was no match for Sherwood's star pitcher, Will Bouey.
The game, said head coach John MacDonald, was truly a battle between Denenberg and Bouey. While he said that Denenberg wasn't quite able to match Sherwood's pitcher pitch for pitch, MacDonald commended him for an outstanding game in which he pitched eight scoreless innings and walked only three players. Denenberg exhibited impressive stamina throughout the long game, and consistently kept Sherwood pitchers off balance with a strong command of his curveball. Though he allowed more hits than Sherwood, Denenberg stepped up in tight situations and managed strikeouts with Sherwood men on base.
Blazer offense didn't fare as well and Bouey managed to struck out a three Blazers.
The Blazers had more success at bat in the sixth inning when a single by senior catcher Alex Egber allowed pinch runner junior Topher Zuleger-Freeman to take first base. Zuleger-Freeman then advanced to second after a failed pickoff attempt by Bouey. Afterwards, Sherwood walked junior Nevin Brown, but Blair's offensive efforts were thwarted yet again, and Brown was forced out at second base to become the third out of the inning.
MacDonald thought that Blair defense did a good job during the stalemate of the first eight innings, but that the team failed to put the ball into play offensively. Batters struck out too frequently as a result of failing to make adjustments, he said. While many of the team's top players went into the past few games with remarkable batting averages, MacDonald attributed some of this success at the plate to the team having come up against mediocre pitching. "We've got to step up against a guy like this," he said in reference to Bouey.
After the eighth inning, however, the game took a quick turn in Sherwood's favor. With junior Lucas Babinec pitching, one Sherwood batter was walked, and the next hit the ball past Blair's shortstop that allowed the runner on first to score. The next batter's hit to centerfield batted in another Warrior and sent the batter to third. A final line drive to left field brought a third runner home, bringing the score to 3-0. In the bottom of the inning, Blair couldn't come back. Two batters were walked and the next three were outs, ending the lengthy game with a conclusive defeat.
Overall, MacDonald regarded the game as a good one, and recognized strong performances by Denenberg and senior Elliot Meyerson, both on offense and defense. However, he believed that considering the team's talent, they could have been more successful in their last few games. "We're not playing to our potential," he said. Looking forward, he hopes that Denenberg can rest his arm and that the team can bounce back for their upcoming Wednesday game against Magruder.
Varsity baseball plays its next home game against Poolesville on April 24 at 1:30 p.m.
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