Mark Little, of 12th-ranked Loch Raven's squad, is a young man of few words. It's what he does that speaks volumes.
The 15-year-old sophomore hurler made a lot of noise in yesterday's 10-5, Class 2A North Region quarterfinal victory over No. 11-ranked Towson, going the distance for his seventh victory without a loss. At the plate, he lacked only a triple for the cycle.
"It was a tough one on me, physically," said Little (7-0), who went 3-for-4 with three RBIs at the plate. On the mound, he struck out three of six batters in the final inning. He walked four batters and hit another.
"I knew they'd get their hits, but I just wanted to keep the ball down," Little said. "I wanted to make them hit ground balls and let our defense and hitting take over."
Though Little allowed nine hits, the Raiders (18-2), whose next opponent is Aberdeen on Wednesday, supported him with solid defense (just two errors) and solid batting (12 hits). They also provided him with a 5-0 first-inning lead.
Jeff Dahlem, a 6-foot-4, 170-pound first baseman, went 3-for-4 with two RBIs, and right fielder Andy Gaynor was 2-for-4 with two RBIs. Little, Dahlem, Gaynor and Matt Anderson (1-for-2, two walks) all doubled, with Anderson and Todd Smith (1-for-4) scoring two runs each.
The leaders for Towson (16-3) -- which got no closer than three runs -- were Mike Williams, Fred Metschulat and Emerson Stewart, all 2-for-4. The loss ended a nine-game winning streak for Towson and gave the Raiders a 2-1 edge in games against their area rival.
The Generals had hammered the Raiders, 12-4, in their previous meeting, with ace John Promen getting the win. Trailing by five runs in the first inning yesterday, the damage already had been done when Promen (8-1) relieved starter Terry Moore (5-0).
"That early lead gave us confidence, and we never let up," said Dahlem, whose team overcame Towson's 12 hits to win the first meeting, 5-4. "We were 1-1 coming in, but they really embarrassed us the last time. This was a make-up."
After Paul Kollman's sixth-inning blast bounced off Promen's right shin, the senior, badly shaken but not injured seriously, was replaced by Josh Beck.
"Terry got taken out early, but John gave us a lift. They've been our one-two punch all year," said Towson coach Bill Yosca. "But this [four errors] was our worst defensive effort."
Pub Date: 5/13/97