Darryl DeSalvo threw the baseball like there was no tomorrow. Pat Boucher hit Mike Ziegler's fastballs for a two-run homer and run-scoring double. And Casey Stidham sprayed the ball around the field for three hits and two RBIs.
That's how 12th-ranked Severna Park (8-4) systematically dismantled No. 1 Old Mill, 5-0, in a fast-moving, well-played Anne Arundel County game played in a drizzle at Old Mill yesterday.
DeSalvo, a slender senior right-hander, has seldom been better than he was yesterday as he shut out the Patriots (11-2) on five hits, striking out nine and walking just one.
He painted the outside corner of the plate all day with fastballs and mixed his pitches beautifully. Only one Old Mill runner reached third base.
"Basically, I just hit the corners, didn't give up many free passes, made them hit the ball, and the defense played well behind me," said DeSalvo, who improved his record to 4-1. "It's probably as well as I've pitched in high school."
DeSalvo has been overshadowed by the likes of Old Mill's Ziegler, Arundel's Kurt Light and Chesapeake's Jared Vogt.
"I've said all season, when we catch the ball, we win. When we don't, we lose," said Falcons coach Jim Pitt, whose team committed only one error yesterday.
"Put that together with DeSalvo's pitching and our timely hitting, and you're going to win. DeSalvo had command of his pitches. He has a decent fast ball, a slider and a curve ball."
Old Mill was led by senior second baseman Chad Gerben, who had a 3-for-3 afternoon.
For Severna Park's Boucher and Stidham, it was one of those days when almost everything went right against Ziegler.
Boucher, a junior third baseman, hit a 2-and-1 fastball over the right-field fence in first inning with Tony Dokoupil on first base, giving DeSalvo all the runs he would need.
The second time up in the third inning, Boucher got another fastball from Ziegler and grounded out to second.
"I can't believe he threw me another fastball," said Boucher on the way to the bench in the third.
So what does Boucher see in the fifth inning when he comes up the third time?
"Another fastball. I loved it," said Boucher, who drilled the ball hard to left center for a run-scoring double and a 4-0 lead.
Boucher bats third in the Severna Park lineup and is followed by the strong, 6-foot-4 Stidham.
Stidham drove in the two other runs for the winners with a sizzling line shot to left in the third inning to score Greg Beachley from second for a 3-0 lead. He also made it 5-0 in the seventh with a single with runners on first and third.
"Both those hits came off fast balls," said Stidham. "My other hit in the first was off a curve ball. I haven't been hitting like I should, and it was nice to break loose."
Ziegler tried to take the loss in stride. "When you're No. 1, people are going to be coming at you every time out. We hadn't played in about a week and I hadn't pitched in 10 to 11 days."
Severna Park collected nine hits off Ziegler, all of them from the lineup's first four batters. Ziegler (4-2) struck out eight and walked one.
Beachley, the second hitter, went 3-for-4 and lead-off batter Dokoupil had a first-inning single to account for four hits and Stidham and Boucher combined for five hits.
Pub Date: 4/24/97