Curves from on high put Atholton down, 4-0

Glenelg breaks game open in 6th, Starcher fans eight


April 14, 1999|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

Glenelg starter Jeff Starcher's eyes lit up yesterday when he saw the unusual height of Atholton's pitching mound, one of the highest in the county.

Starcher's best pitch is the curveball, and a high mound adds snap to that pitch.

So it was no surprise that Starcher (3-0), last season's Baltimore Sun Howard County Player of the Year, threw his best game of the season, a five-hit, 4-0 victory over the No. 14-ranked Raiders (4-3 overall, 3-3 league). He struck out eight and walked three.

Starcher's pitching opponent, Adam Beaver, also hurled a fine game, holding No. 9 Glenelg (6-2, 4-2) scoreless on four hits through the first five innings.

Beaver (2-1) pitched out of trouble in the third, fourth and fifth innings, supported by flawless and sometimes spectacular defense, especially by second baseman Ross Laidig and shortstop Seth Williams.

That support faltered in Glenelg's four-run sixth inning.

Jason Weszka's lead-off single was bobbled in right field, allowing Weszka to reach second base.

With one out, Jon Hughes hit a catchable pop-up near the third base bag in foul territory that fell untouched. Hughes then doubled, driving home the game's first run.

"I got a second chance and took advantage," Hughes said. "I just wanted to drive it. Getting a second chance makes you focus more."

Beaver then lost the plate, walking two straight batters and loading the bases before being lifted for reliever Nick Hartman.

Hartman retired the first batter with no damage, and when he took the lineup's No. 9 batter, Chris Hertel, to a 1-2 count, the Raiders seemed ready to escape the big inning.

Instead, Hartman plunked Hertel in the calf with an errant curveball, forcing home the second run -- "the turning point of the game," said Glenelg coach Tom Thrasher.

The next hitter, Brandon Robertson, lined a two-run single before Hartman struck out Starcher to end the inning.

"Jeff does the job every time," said Hughes, a senior who was a crucial part of Glenelg's state championship team last season.

No. 1 Arundel falls again

Adam Moore threw a complete-game two-hitter and struck out seven as visiting Chesapeake-AA gave No. 1-ranked Arundel (5-4) its second loss in as many days to an unranked team, 2-1.

Chesapeake scored its runs in the third on an error and Phil Personett's single. Mike Fox homered in the seventh was the only run for Arundel (5-4).

Pub Date: 4/14/99

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