Cougars' nightmare 5th gives Glen Burnie 8-5 win Gophers add four hits to four errors for victory

March 26, 1998|By Glenn P. Graham | Glenn P. Graham,SUN STAFF

Chesapeake had one of those error-filled, early-season innings a young team often experiences at Glen Burnie yesterday. And veteran Glen Burnie took advantage.

Four errors by the Cougars, combined with four Gophers hits, put five runs across in the fifth inning, as No. 2-ranked Glen Burnie broke open a close game to take an 8-5 win in its season opener.

The No. 9-ranked Cougars (2-1) had just put their first run across in the top of the inning to close the gap to 2-1, but the Gophers, with help, were able to respond.

"We found a way to win," said Glen Burnie coach Bob Broccolino. "It was our first game, and [Chesapeake] already had two games in, so we were a little nervous, had some jitters. We have some seniors on the team and came up with some good situation-hitting. Chesapeake is a much better team than that, and it will be a lot better game the next time around."

The Gophers took a 2-0 lead with single runs in the first and third before Chesapeake got its offense going in the fifth. Meredith Pirone singled between third and short with two out and scored on Kareem Falcon's double off the glove of Gopher center fielder Jamie Dotson.

Before the Cougars, who have only one senior, could feel good about getting back into the game, they self-destructed with the four straight errors before Michelle Schulteis singled and Michelle Ogle and pinch hitter Jessica Willis followed with run-scoring doubles to provide the Gophers with a 7-1 lead.

"We're a young team with a mixture of new kids. It will take awhile before everyone gets used to playing together," said Chesapeake coach Dennis Thiele. "Right now, when we make a mistake, it seems when it rains it pours. But I'm very pleased with the way we finished the game. It's a growing process, and there's nothing there we can't fix."

The Cougars didn't quit, getting consecutive singles from Lauren Gontkof and Lindsey Ries to start the sixth with both coming in to score on a Glen Burnie error and a fielder's choice.

After Glen Burnie got one back in the sixth to make it 8-3, the Cougars went down swinging with Ries getting her third hit of the day -- a two-run double in center -- before Gophers pitcher Jen Zabetakis closed the game out by getting Kristen Bishoff to ground out to second.

The Gophers play No. 1-ranked Archbishop Spalding at 3: 45 p.m. today at Randazzo Park in a game postponed by rain on Saturday.

Pub Date: 3/26/98

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