For seven innings yesterday, Severna Park's John Ritter shut out top-ranked Calvert Hall in a non-league baseball game played at Calvert Hall.
The junior right-hander didn't allow a base hit until the seventh, but the No. 3-ranked Falcons did not score until getting three runs in the eighth.
Severna Park's Rob McCandless came on in relief of Ritter to pitch the bottom of the eighth and gain the victory.
"I was real excited to get a shot at Calvert Hall," said Ritter (1-0). "I felt really good through the early innings, but I tired a little toward the end. Luckily, we started hitting."
The Falcons (4-0) got a little help to score their runs.
Alan Baker led off the top of the eighth inning, reaching on an error by shortstop Josh Itzoe. Steve Newberger then was safe on a ball misplayed by third baseman Larry Marino to put runners on first and second with no outs. McCandless followed with a double down the right-field line, scoring Baker to make it 1-0.
Severna Park then sealed the victory, as John Melisitz singled to center scoring Newberger and McCandless.
"John [Ritter] was on top of his game and we played good defense," said Severna Park coach Jim Pitt. "Calvert Hall is always tough."
Calvert Hall (6-2) had averaged 11 runs and batted better than .350 in its previous six victories, before facing Ritter, who has yielded only four hits in 14 innings this season.
"He [Ritter] threw a decent game and kept the ball down," said Calvert Hall coach Joe Binder. "I thought we could have done some things late in the game to put us in a better position to score. Overall, it was just a well-pitched ballgame."