AACC overcomes errors, beats Essex

April 08, 1994|By Pat O'Malley | Pat O'Malley,Sun Staff Writer

You can't hardly expect to win a close game when you commit five errors, get four chances to make an inning-ending double play and turn only one, but Anne Arundel Community College did yesterday in Arnold.

Outstanding pitching efforts by lefties John Degen (4-1) and Lee Haney and some timely hitting enabled the Pioneers (16-5) to overcome the miscues and top Essex, 4-1, in a Region XX Division I game.

Degen went the first six innings, giving up three infield hits, an unearned run and three walks and striking out four.

With Degen's pitch count at 102 after a two-out bases-loaded jam in the sixth, coach Clayton Jacobson summoned Haney to close it. Haney did not give up a hit, walked one and struck out five.

"With that kind of pitching, you're going to win a lot of games, and that was the difference," said Essex coach George Henderson, whose team is 6-2.

Randy Musgrove got the Pioneers in order in the first, but was in trouble every inning thereafter before being pulled in the fifth.

After fouling off a sacrifice bunt attempt with runners on first and second and none out in the second, AACC shortstop John Young drilled a double into left center, scoring Mike Aguilar and K. C. Murphy to make it 2-0.

Musgrove got out of the inning without further damage, and a double play on a hit-and-run liner to center by Craig Everett saved him in the third. His teammates got him a run in the top of the fourth, but the Pioneers answered with runs in each of their next two at-bats.

Murphy (2-for-4, two runs) and Chris Durocher (3-for-4, one run) each doubled and scored in the fourth and fifth innings on two-out errors by Essex shortstop Gorky Estrella.

Henderson brought in Zach Collins to get the final out of the fifth and the lefty allowed only one base runner the rest of the way.

Rodney Petitt's slap to the right side on a two-out hit and run with two runners on sent Estrella streaking home from second in the fourth for the lone Essex run.

AACC first baseman Darrell Shifflett backhanded the Petitt tap, but Degen was late covering first and couldn't handle the toss.

Essex threatened to do more damage in the eighth inning when the Pioneers muffed two double-play opportunities, but in a real baseball rarity, they got a shot at a third inning-ending double play and executed that one.

"We beat one of the top teams today and that should do a lot for our confidence," said Jacobson.

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