Patapsco knocks off Perry Hall, 6-3

April 27, 1995|By Bill Free | Bill Free,Sun Staff Writer

In the end, it seemed as if Patapsco was destined to knock fourth-ranked Perry Hall from the unbeaten ranks yesterday.

Almost everything the 15th-ranked Patriots touched turned into a run, and nearly everything the Gators touched turned bad.

The Gators (9-1) became the final unbeaten area team to fall when the visiting Patriots scored three unearned runs in the fifth inning to wipe out a 3-2 deficit and send them on the way to a 6-3 victory.

Patapsco (8-4) did not get a hit in the fifth, pushing across the three runs on two errors, two walks, a hit batter and a sacrifice fly.

One of the two Perry Hall errors was a catcher's interference call against Tom Trimble that loaded the bases with one out.

Parry Hall's starting pitcher Jason Essel then walked David Willeford to force in the tying run and hit Jim Griffith to bring in the go-ahead run.

Essel (4-1) was lifted after he hit Griffith, and Adam Nastalski came on to finish the game.

Wayne Brooks made it 5-3 in favor of Patapsco with a sacrifice fly to center, and the Patriots added their final run in the sixth on a double by Charles Greensfelder. It looked as if Greensfelder's double would score Don Pusinsky from first base, but Pusinsky missed home plate and was tagged out by Trimble.

But six runs were more than enough for Patapsco's Jim Trice, who was making his first start after being the team's late-inning stopper.

Trice (1-0) tantalized the Gators with off-speed pitches, curve balls and knuckleballs and scattered seven hits in a route-going performance. He did not allow any earned runs, walked one and struck out one.

"It was fun to start in a big game like this one," said Trice. "I just concentrated on getting their three, four and five hitters [Kevin Znamirowski, Chris Ude and Essel] out and I was really only worried in the third and fourth innings when they got those runs."

Patapsco coach Dave Ingle decided to start Trice on a hunch. "He [Trice] looked like the one to pitch today," said Ingle. "He looked good warming up on the sidelines. I know it wasn't a pretty win for us but a win is a win."

When it became evident the Gators were going to lose, most of the Perry Hall faithful used the time-worn expression "You can't win them all" to explain the defeat.

But Perry Hall coach Larry Butts wasn't buying that.

"You can win them all," he said. "We did it in 1990 [20-0 and state champions] and 1992 [21-0 and state champions]. It was just a combination of them hitting the ball pretty good at times, Trice walking only one, and us making some physical errors and a few mental errors."

In the final two innings, Perry Hall hit some shots off Trice but all of them were right at somebody.

"Early in the game we weren't patient at the plate," said Butts. "I never want to lose but we'll have to forget it and start over in the next game."

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