WESTMINSTER -- A first-inning scoring feast was all that Westminster needed to down Thurmont, 8-3, in the losers' bracket of the District II Little League tournament on Friday.
Westminster capitalized on two Thurmont errors and used three hits to score five runs in the first inning.
"Anything can happen in a situation like this," said Westminster head coach Butch Adams. "No team is going to give up, but I was pleased with the five runs."
The win set up a situation for Carroll teams to face each other at Bennett Cerf park yesterday to decide who would advance.
Westminster was to take the field against Taneytown, which lost to Frederick National on Thursday by a 10-1 score.
"It's another game, and with each game in the playoffs we play a more competitive team," said Adams. "We are going to have to turn it up a notch for each game."
Westminster turned it up a notch and a half in the opening innings against Thurmont.
Using eight hits in the first three innings, Westminster scored all of its eight runs.
Hank Adams kept the scoring alive in the second inning with a solo home run over the left-field fence and into the pond at Bennett Cerf Park.
Adams and Josh Casserly combined to hold Thurmont to four hits in the next five innings.
Casserly gave up only one hit and one run in the two innings he pitched until he was relieved by Jonathan Hill in the sixth inning.
"Josh has good control and one of the best curve balls on the team," said Adams. "I knew I was going to use him in a spot relief role."
Westminster's pitching got some much-needed help at times from the defense.
With no outs and two on, Westminster turned a double play in the last inning and shortstop Billy Mays gunned down Johnny West trying to steal home in the second inning.
Thurmont's Jeremy Favorite came on to put out the fire in the first inning and did just that. Favorite retired the last eight batters in order and struck out three.
The fire was started with a leadoff double by Mays, a walk to Adams and two consecutive errors by Thurmont. Tommy Herb singled to bring in another run and Ryan Webster -- batting in eight -- grounded out to short to score the final run of the inning.
Webster singled and scored the final Westminster run in the third inning as Ryan Dean singled.
The other Carroll team, Taneytown, didn't have as easy a go of it as Westminster did.
Frederick National's Jesse Tomalewski hurled a one-hitter in Thursday's game.
"They had a good pitcher that threw two inside strikes and the third pitch was on the outside corner," said Taneytown head coach Mike Stonesifer. "We had mental mistakes that cost us three or four runs in the first inning."
Taneytown's only hit came in the fourth inning with a double by Larry Naill. A wild pitch moved Naill to third and a ground out by Arnold Johnson got Naill home.
"We are looking ahead now to the game on Saturday," said Stonesifer.