Shake-up in amateur baseball Dayton Raiders join Baltimore Metro

April 07, 1993|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,Staff Writer

Some significant changes are taking place in the county's 17-18 amateur baseball scene.

The most significant change is that the Dayton Raiders 17-18 team, after 11 seasons and seven league championships, no longer will be affiliated with the American Legion baseball program.

Dayton has offered the longest running elite baseball team for players in that age bracket.

The Raiders, under a new and yet-to-be-decided coach, and the sponsorship of the Howard County Youth Program, are joining the Baltimore Metro League where another county 17-18 team, the Columbia Reds, is already a member.

George Bickerton, who coached the Dayton team last season, has decided to start an independent 17-18 team and call it the Howard County Hawks.

The Hawks will play a 36-game schedule against seven Montgomery County American Legion teams and two non-legion teams, St. Albans and Sidwell-Friends. Bickerton's Dayton team had played a partial schedule against Montgomery County teams last season.

"It's just a much better situation for us in Montgomery County," Bickerton said. "The league is much better organized and the coaches are a better group to work with."

As an independent team, the Hawks will be able to recruit from anywhere. Bickerton was allowed to recruit from only four county high schools last season, but still nearly won a league championship.

Bickerton, who underwent prostate cancer surgery toward the end of last season, was still recovering when the team lost to Dundalk in a one-game playoff for the second-half district championship.

That playoff would not have been necessary had Bickerton taken a forfeit for a game that the Dundalk team was unable to attend. Instead, Bickerton agreed to reschedule the game and Dayton lost it.

Dundalk eventually advanced to the state playoffs by winning another playoff against the first-half champion, A. J. Raveio of Baltimore Highlands.

Bickerton expects his new team to play home games at Cedar Lane Park and Howard High.

The team will not be eligible for the American Legion state playoffs, but Bickerton hopes to get the team in a postseason tournament in Pennsylvania.

Gill picks Roanoke

Rehan Gill, a star striker/midfielder for the state Class 3A champion Centennial Eagles last fall, said he will attend Roanoke College next fall.

Gill, The Baltimore Sun's Howard County Co-Player of the Year, scored five goals and had two assists, but his main role was as a target player. He always took one or two defenders with him wherever he went.

He was adept at holding, collecting and dishing off the ball to teammates.

"He's one of the better players I've ever had with the ability to play with his back to the goal," Centennial coach Bill Stara said. "He was my best player [last season] and did a yeoman job offensively and defensively."

Gill will play midfield in college, a position he prefers to striker. He said he selected Roanoke because he liked the classes it offered and the campus.

"And coach Scott Allison, who recruited me, said he would guarantee me a starting job," Gill said.

College notes

Brian Bickerton (Centennial) pitched a no-hitter for St. Mary's College against New York University March 16 in Cocoa, Fla.

Bickerton struck out 10 and walked three. He also plays third base for St. Mary's and is seven for 12 at the plate.

UMBC's Adrian Washington (Oakland Mills) won the 100 meters (10.69 seconds) and the 200 meters (22.16) at the Charleston Southern Tri-Meet March 17.

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