Hereford keeps rolling in 1A with 10-7 win over North East

May 21, 1994|By Rich Scherr LLTC | Rich Scherr LLTC,Special to The Sun

Prior to the start of this season, Hereford coach Guy Fisher said that hitting could be his team's biggest question mark.

Now, though, the biggest question for opponents is how to stop the Bulls' torrid lineup.

Yesterday, in the Class 1A, North Region semifinals, North East of Cecil County became the latest victim to come up empty in the search for an answer.

The host Bulls pounded out 13 hits and reached base safely 18 times en route to a 10-7 win over the Indians to advance to today's 9 a.m. regional final against top-seeded Rising Sun at Dundalk Community College. Rising Sun beat Joppatowne, 9-6, yesterday.

For Fisher, Hereford's hot hitting has come as a most pleasant surprise.

"I didn't know how good we'd be," said Fisher, whose team has averaged over 10 hits a game. "Things change. Before the season, we hadn't seen any live pitching. Now we're definitely a hitting team."

The Bulls (13-6) battered North East starter Don Sweetman, scoring seven runs on 10 hits during the right-hander's 2 2/3 innings of work.

Designated hitter Geoff DeGarmo went 3-for-4 with an RBI and scored two runs. He said the key yesterday was patience at the plate.

"He was throwing pretty much just fastballs and curveballs, so we were just trying to wait on the fastball," said DeGarmo. "We have a lot of guys who can hit in the lineup, and we're confident that we can hit just about anybody."

Other Hereford players with multiple hits were Andy Minton (2-for-4), Matt Saunders (2-for-3), Clint Eaton (2-for-3) and Jason Sparks (2-for-4).

Meanwhile, starter Bob Ignatowski kept the Indians (10-9) relatively quiet on offense, allowing four runs on five hits through the first six innings before tiring in the seventh.

The left-hander used a fastball and biting curve to strike out nine and has struck out 60 in eight games. But the Indians also hurt themselves, failing to get hits in key situations and stranding six runners in scoring position and playing shaky defense.

"We're young," said coach Mel Bacon, whose roster includes only two seniors. "We lost eight games during the regular season, and at some point in every game we were either winning or tied. We made a lot of mistakes because of our inexperience."

For Hereford, it's off to the regional finals, where last year the Bulls lost to Hammond. For Fisher, however, this team already has surpassed his preseason expectations.

"We lost two really good hitters after last season, but looking back now we've been a really good ballclub," he said. "We're hitting well, and there's not one person who carries the lineup. We're a team."

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