May, Centennial gain state final, 5-0 Softball

May 26, 1993|By Gary Lambrecht | Gary Lambrecht,Staff Writer

Kim May's act is getting redundant, although you won't hear her Centennial softball teammates complaining about it.

Last night in the Class 3A state semifinals at Randazzo Park, May assumed an unhittable look that has grown familiar in recent weeks. After the Eagles gave her an early 4-0 lead, May ended Dundalk's season by pitching a two-hit shutout, as Centennial won, 5-0, to advance to the state final for the first time in seven years.

The Eagles will play defending 3A champion Calvert tomorrow night at 8:30 at Randazzo Park. Calvert knocked off the Eagles last year in the state semifinals. Centennial will try to become the first Howard County school to win a state title.

The Eagles (19-4) won their 10th in 11 games by doing the things they've done so well lately.

Their defense, except for a meaningless error in the seventh inning, was flawless. In its four-run third inning, Centennial took advantage of a Dundalk error and combined two walks, a sacrifice bunt, a double steal, an RBI double by Kari Chichester and a two-run single by May.

But May did most of her damage on the mound. She faced one batter over the minimum, gave up two singles, walked one and struck out 11 to extend her scoreless-inning streak to 24. May, one of five sophomores in Centennial's starting lineup, has yet to give up a run in the playoffs.

"I didn't think I'd be pitching for the state championship," said May, who lowered her ERA to 1.75 and improved her record to 16-4. "We've gotten so close as a team and we work so well together. Every person is great at every position."

Said senior catcher Kari Chichester: "At the beginning of the season, Kim wasn't sure of herself, but as the team started to improve, she gained confidence."

Through her first three perfect innings, May recorded six strikeouts, including four on called third strikes. Running blunders by the Owls (14-3) erased their only two hits. In the fourth inning, Michele Michalski was doubled off of first base when Noel Cook popped up a bunt attempt. In the sixth, Tammy Frado led off with a single and was thrown out in a rundown between first and second.

"I think they [Dundalk] were in awe of this atmosphere, since pTC they've never been here before," said Dundalk coach Pat Mongan, whose Owls made their first state title appearance in 10 years. "[May] was also the fastest pitcher we faced."

Centennial tagged losing pitcher Katie Marsheck -- who entered the game with a 12-2 record and a 0.33 ERA -- for eight hits.

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