Bowers double up for Owls Baseball brothers: Senior Denny and sophomore Matt are making a difference for Westminster.

April 19, 1996|By Glenn P. Graham | Glenn P. Graham,SUN STAFF

Senior Denny Bowers was one of the first players mentioned by Westminster baseball coach Carl Rihard when previewing the season. And rightly so.

The pitcher/first baseman was a first-team All-County performer as a junior after hitting .405 with four homers and 22 RBIs, along with going 5-0 on the mound in his first varsity season.

When Rihard continued down the roster to the newcomers, sophomore Matt Bowers quickly was recognized.

"He's bigger than his older brother and hits the ball just as hard," Rihard said.

The Bowers' brothers agree it happened a couple of years ago. "I was big and stopped; he just kept going," Denny said.

Denny, who will turn 18 in June, is a solid 6 feet 2, 215 pounds, and Matt, who just turned 16, is already 6-3, 230.

"I can still take him," Denny says jokingly.

During preseason batting practice, Denny already was getting heat from his teammates after Matt hit over the fence a couple of times and it was Denny's turn to bat.

Denny had answers, but they were not needed.

"There's no sibling rivalry," Rihard said. "Both play first base, but no one is trying to outdo the other. They're best of friends," Ever since Little League, getting a chance to play on the same team always has been difficult because of a two-year age difference. Matt would move up to where Denny was and they would play a year together before Denny would move up to the next level.

"It's nothing real big except we always seem to play better when we're there at the same time," Denny said.

This season, the Owls are ranked sixth in the metro area with Denny batting cleanup and Matt hitting eighth. That's when having a big brother around helps.

"The competition is a lot better [at the varsity level], especially the pitching," Matt said. "Denny gives me a lot of advice and helps out when I get down. When I don't get the job done, he tells me to keep my head up and keep at it."

Denny is hitting .480 with nine RBIs and seven extra base hits, and Matt, mostly used as the designated hitter, is batting .333 with seven RBIs.

Both already have hit memorable home runs this season. Denny's came in a win at Liberty when he sent a liner over the left-field fence that finally landed in the middle of the basketball courts.

One of Matt's two was a towering shot in a win against Atholton on Saturday at Westminster.

"It would have come close to the road, but the wind kept blowing and blowing and knocking it down," Rihard said. "For it to get out of here on such a windy day was quite a feat."

Sports always has played a major role in the Bowers' home with the two shuffling from one sport to the next. Denny, who plans to play baseball and football at Susquehanna University next year, was a second-team All-Metro tight end in the fall.

Matt, nicknamed "Beef" by Denny when he was running around the bases one day in Little League, plans to play football and basketball for the Owls next season.

"Playing sports is all we did. When one was over, we'd move right on to the next," Denny said. "It was always a lot of running around."

Pub Date: 4/19/96

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