It was a scary weekend for top-seeded teams as the Mount Airy and Taneytown men's softball leagues concluded their 1991 campaigns with postseason tournaments.
Taneytown Jaycees League regular-season champ Dougherty's found itself down five runs late in Sunday morning's title game with Hood Electric.
It recovered to take an 8-5 verdict at the Union Bridge CommunityCenter, winning this tournament for the third year.
But B-L Painting, which had dominated the Mount Airy Men's Softball League regularseason to the tune of 29-1, could only watch from the sidelines Sunday afternoon as regular season fourth-place finisher Holmes Tire upended Orthodontic Supply and Equipment Co., 9-7, in the tournament finale.
B-L finished a disappointing fifth in the 16-team Mount Airy tournament field.
Lehigh, second in the Taneytown league with a 17-3 regular-season mark, also found itself on the outside looking in atchampionship time, thanks to Keymar Church, a 5-16 regular-season finisher.
Keymar eliminated Lehigh in a losers' bracket game and finished third.
Hood, fourth in the Taneytown regular season, was another underdog on the rise.
It won its first two Jaycees tournamentgames Saturday before facing Dougherty's, also 2-0.
But in this meeting of Francis Scott Key alumni, the older Dougherty's squad, loaded with graduates of the 1982-84 classes, prevailed, 8-4.
Rick Hill and manager Keith Eagle stroked RBI singles in the home third to put Dougherty's up, 4-3, and it cruised from there.
Danny Strine ledthe winners with a 3-for-3 game and scored three runs.
But Hood, comprised of late-1980s Key grads, then knocked Keymar Church out to face Dougherty's again, having to win twice.
It prevailed in the first game, 17-8.
In that one, Dougherty's led, 7-5, early, but Hood blew ahead, 11-7, with a six-run fifth and never looked back.
"We have two to three games like that every year. We didn't do anythingright," said Eagle. "But they played good defense and really hit theball."
With momentum now on Hood's side, however, Mother Nature intervened. Darkness pushed the deciding game between the two back to Sunday morning.
They almost did it anyway.
Hood led, 5-0, afterfive innings.
Nevertheless, his team survived a four-run Dougherty's burst in the sixth inning. Hood clung to a 5-4 lead in the seventh, with Dougherty's down to its final out and a runner on first.
Then Craig Sanders singled to put runners on first and second.
JeffMyers promptly tied it with a single, and Pat Hobbs, Randy Jenkins and Strine added RBI singles to salt it away.
Storey, though, was proud of his youngish squad, saying, "I was disappointed, but we can'tcomplain about what we did in our first year (as a team)."
Neither can Holmes manager Sonny Harrison, whose team snapped out of a batting slump just in time to win its fourth consecutive Mount Airy postseason title. He said Holmes' key tournament game was against B-L Saturday afternoon.
There, it trailed by three runs with two out in the home seventh. Then Rick Harrison, who hit nine home runs in the tournament and was named its MVP, hit a bases-empty shot. Gary Harrison added a two-run blast to tie it.
Ken Stockdale completed a four-run comeback frame with an RBI single, and Holmes was an 8-7 winner.
Sunday morning it topped Lawson's in the winners' bracket final and then waited.
Sunday afternoon, Orthodontic Supply and Equipment Co. came out of the losers' tier to confront unbeaten Holmes, having towin twice.
Their game was tied, 5-5, in the fifth, and O.S.E. hadits top hitters up.
But the Linganore- and Damascus-based squad (Frederick and Montgomery counties, respectively) went scoreless.
Holmes' liners, on the other hand, fell in.
Sonny Harrison's two-run single in the sixth broke the tie and Holmes went on from there.