Roman gives Gaels some fast relief in 7-4 win No. 4 Mount St. Joseph stops No. 3 Chesapeake

March 22, 1997|By Lem Satterfield | Lem Satterfield,SUN STAFF

For coach Dave Norton, yesterday's 7-4 victory by No. 4-ranked Mount St. Joseph over No. 3 Chesapeake of Anne Arundel will make it more pleasant to pick up this morning's newspaper.

Norton lives in Anne Arundel County's Lake Shore, "within spitting distance of Chesapeake," he said. His son Joe, 9, plays in the sandlot system that feeds the Cougars' program. And from Norton's doorstep, the home of Chesapeake catcher Dave Stepp is in full view.

"Obviously, this is a bit of a neighborhood rivalry," said Norton. "Any friends or neighbors anxious to know what the score of today's game was can just pick up tomorrow's paper, and I can hold my head up high for another summer."

Another Pasadena resident is Puerto Rico native Juan Carlos Roman, who relieved Gaels' winning starter Eric Watts (six hits, two strikeouts, one walk) in the fifth inning. Roman's cousin attends Chesapeake, and five Cougars players are close friends.

Roman faced one of those close friends in the fifth, when Ray Wagner, who had gone 2-for-2 with an RBI, stepped to the plate with two men on and one out. Roman struck out Wagner, whose third-inning hit had tied the game at 4-4.

St. Joe led, 4-0, after an inning, sparked by Jason Funk's first-pitch double. After Jeff Fraley (0-1) walked Jimmy Dunn on five pitches, Mike Martin's infield hit got him on, but first baseman Jared Vogt dropped the throw from third and Funk scored Funk for a 1-0 lead.

It was 3-0 after Watts followed an intentional walk of second-team All-Metro Mark Teixeira with a two-run double. It was 4-0 after Teixeira crossed the plate on a wild pitch.

But the Cougars climed to within a run, 4-3, with a four-hit, three-run second inning. With one out, Vogt and Wagner both reached on singles. Watts struck out Chad Duncan, but after Fraley reached on an error, Ryan Blackstein's bases-loaded, two-run single was followed up by another run-scoring single by Mike Bianco.

The Gaels took a permanent lead, 5-4, after Dan Warner's fourth-inning single scored Joe Hargadon, who had doubled before taking third on a wild pitch.

The final two Gaels runs scored on walks.

Pub Date: 3/22/97

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