Top-ranked Mount St. Joseph and baseball coach Dave Norton can't wait to get at Anne Arundel County tomorrow in the Jack Conley Easter Tournament to be played in Irvington.
And at least one county team can't wait to get at the Gaels.
Norton's Gaels (5-1) are playing host to No. 4 Arundel (3-2) and struggling Glen Burnie (0-4) along with Fallston (2-0) of Harford County. In the opening 10 a.m. games, Glen Burnie plays St. Joe while Arundel meets Fallston with the winners meeting at 3 p.m. in the championship. The consolation is at noon.
After St. Joe knocked off No. 6 Chesapeake (2-1), by 5-2 last week, Norton, who resides in the Chesapeake school district, ruffled a lot of feathers in the county baseball community with his remarks. The St. Joe coach basically said he was tired of hearing how good Anne Arundel baseball was.
Two days later, Chesapeake upset No. 3 Calvert Hall, 4-0, and Cougars coach Jim Simms expressed his disappointment over Norton's "disrespect" for Anne Arundel baseball, but did not gloat over the big win.
Then, a week ago , I suggested, tongue in cheek, that Norton get into the county league so he could beat county teams more often. That day in a phone conversation with Norton, the coach told me he would love to play in the county league and have a chance at a state title.
"The kids brought in the article to me this morning. Do you think Anne Arundel County would let us join their league and play for the state championship? I don't think that will happen," said Norton, "but I would love to do that."
Norton also said he was looking forward to a likely showdown with Arundel in the tournament. "We hope to play them," said the coach.
Arundel is defending 4A state champion and holds the record for state titles (7).
Coach Bernie Walter's Wildcats edged No. 14 Severna Park (3-1) by 2-1 Wednesday on a five-hitter by ace right-hander Kurt Light (1-1). It's hard to say if Walter would use Light in short relief at St. Joe.
Walter does have senior left-hander Andy Vermillion, right-hander Derek Loosararian and left-hander Ryan Fox ready. Fox and Loosararian combined for a 5-3 victory over Southern Tuesday.
No question that the Wildcats will be putting their reputation and that of Anne Arundel County on the line tomorrow.
At the same time, Norton with his contingent of Anne Arundel players is anxious to add two more Anne Arundel teams to St. Joe'slist of victims. St. Joe ace Ryan Baker, who lives in Linthicum, is the likely starter for the championship game, assuming the Gaels get by winless Glen Burnie.
Baker worked a couple innings of relief in St. Joe's 3-2 victory over Frederick's Thomas Johnson on Wednesday.
Around the horn
Junior Jared Vogt (1-1) pitched Chesapeake to a 4-0 victory over Meade Wednesday to enable the No. 6 Cougars to improve to 2-1. . . . North County is also off to a 2-1 start with senior Wayne Feuerherd pitching all three games, including Wednesday's 5-2 triumph over Northeast (1-2). . . . South River (1-2) got its first win by 7-2 over Southern (2-3) on a two-hitter by senior left-hander Kevin Eades. . . . South River coach Ken Dunn is giving an unnamed girl a tryout for the Seahawks' baseball team. The girl was told in preseason she had to go out for the so-called "comparable" sport of softball, but after Becky Carlson was given permission to play for the Arundel JV, the South River girl was granted a tryout.
Should we be calling it "boys and girls" baseball? Why not a co-ed league to satisfy everyone?
No. 16 Broadneck (2-2) will be hard-pressed to defend its Easter tournament title against No. 2 Old Mill (4-0) tomorrow. . . . MIAA A Conference teams Curley and Loyola also are playing at Broadneck.
Former Annapolis left-hander Shawn Tipton is coaching first base and the pitchers for his old coach, Larry Brogden, but leaves soon for Brainerd, Minn., to play for the Bobcats in the Independent Prairie League. . . . In softball , Arundel center fielder Ruth Wilson has signed a letter of intent to play at Towson State, joining two-time All-Metro center fielder Melissa Snyder of Severna Park. Snyder is starting as a freshman for the Tigers. . . . Wilson made a spectacular over-the-shoulder catch in right-center Wednesday on a shot by Severna Park DH Amanda Donaldson in the second inning as the No. 7 Wildcats upset the No. 3 Falcons, 2-1.
Pub Date: 4/05/96