Wooden, N. County top Gophers

April 04, 1995|By Pat O'Malley | Pat O'Malley,Staff Writer

Every team has a nemesis and for No. 3 North County, it has been Glen Burnie.

On the way to their first playoff berth last season, the Knights lost twice to the Gophers.

The two teams split the year before when North County had its first winning season at 11-7 and missed the playoffs by a game.

The time had come to put an end to the frustration, so coach Don Usewick used his ace, Mike Wooden when the two teams met yesterday at Glen Burnie.

Result: Wooden throws a two-hitter with no walks and 14 strikeouts and an 8-0 victory for the No. 3 Knights (3-0) over the No. 10 Gophers (2-1).

"They've [Glen Burnie] always been tough on us, so we had Mike ready for them," said Usewick. "It was a typical Mike Wooden performance."

Wooden (2-0) has yet to give up an earned run in 14 innings and has struck out 24 in back-to-back complete games, running his career strikeout total to 199.

Glen Burnie left fielder and No. 3 batter Desmond Dailey had the only two hits off Wooden, a triple in the first inning and an infield hit in the third.

Dailey was stranded at third in the first after Wooden struck out Tony Hynson the first of three times, and Dailey was picked off first by Wooden after his second hit.

Dailey and No. 2 batter Ted Westwood (three groundouts) were the only two Gophers who Wooden didn't strike out. Glen Burnie had 23 hits in its first two victories.

"I put on about 15 pounds in the off-season," said Wooden, who is now 6 feet 2, 190 pounds, "and used Maryland's weightlifting program, and am throwing harder than I ever have this early in the year.

"Dailey had my number today," he said, "but I hope I get to pitch against him again."

Wooden's only varsity win as a freshman came 8-3 over Glen Burnie. The Gophers dealt Wooden a 3-1 loss as a sophomore and didn't see him last year in their series sweep.

"He's as good as they come," Gophers coach Bruce Sider said of Wooden, who gets three pitches -- fastball, curve and change -- over the plate consistently.

Wooden's teammates staked him an early 3-0 lead in the second inning off losing pitcher Jay Sponuagle (1-1). C. J. Jones started things with a triple and came home on Earl Sewell's base hit to right. Joe Hizon's two-bagger scored Sewell and Hizon came in on the Gophers' first of four errors.

The Knights put together another three-run inning in the fifth. Sponuagle, who stayed around for all seven innings and 12 hits, gave up back-to-back doubles to Wooden and Tomshack, an unearned run, and an RBI single by Wayne Feuerherd in the inning.

Tweety Barton led off the seventh with a double down the right-field line and came home on Jones' second homer of the season, a booming shot to left center to cap the scoring.

* Calvert Hall 3, McDonogh 0: Calvert Hall left-hander Andy Bair tossed a one-hitter and struck out 12 as the top-ranked Cardinals (6-0, 1-0) downed visiting and No. 2 McDonogh (6-1, 1-1) in a Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference game.

* Chesapeake-AA 6, Arundel 3: Matt Michalowicz, Billy Dierker and Luis Falcon each had two hits to lead an 11-hit attack as visiting Chesapeake-AA defeated No. 4 Arundel (1-2). Sophomore right-hander Jason Vogt pitched a complete-game, six-hitter for Chesapeake.

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