Quick-starting Curley dumps No. 2 Gaels, 14-4

6th victory in 7 games could keep St. Joe from top

April 17, 1999|By Bo Smolka | Bo Smolka,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

With top-ranked Arundel having lost twice to unranked opponents earlier this week, as well as yesterday, No. 2 Mount St. Joseph figured to ascend to the No. 1 spot.

Not so fast.

Eleventh-ranked Archbishop Curley hammered the host Gaels, 14-4, in a Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference game yesterday.

In winning for the sixth time in its past seven games, Curley (12-6) roughed up St. Joe starter Brad Fell for six first-inning runs.

That proved to be enough for Curley senior pitcher Steve Hood, who held the Gaels (12-4) to four hits, none after the second inning.

Hood, making his first league start and just the second of his career, survived a shaky first inning in which he allowed three runs on three hits.

"I was a little nervous, with my first [league] start," Hood said. "I settled down. I started to get my pitches over, and we hit the ball."

Avenging an earlier 4-1 loss to the Gaels, Curley scored in every inning and smacked 16 hits off three Mount St. Joseph pitchers.

The hitting was contagious; eight Friars had at least one hit.

Curley set the tempo immediately, as six of its first seven batters reached base, three on walks by Fell. But Derek Fritz contributed a two-run double and Brian Salamone drove in a pair of runs with a bases-loaded single.

Leadoff hitter Adam Schisler went 2-for-2 in the inning. He opened the game with a single and then drilled a two-run double that chased Fell from the game.

Mount St. Joseph answered in the bottom of the first with three runs, two driven in by Stevie Brown's triple.

But after the first inning, "the bats went dead," said Gaels assistant coach Jody Harris. "Their kids fielded the ball, they did what they needed to do, and they put the ball in play."

Harris guided the Gaels in place of coach Dave Norton, who was serving a suspension after being ejected from the Calvert Hall game April 12.

Curley built its lead to 8-3 in the top of the second on a sacrifice fly by Salamone and a run-scoring single by Justin Tester, who went 3-for-5.

Curley added another run in the third, two in the fourth and single runs in the fifth, sixth and seventh.

The fifth-inning run came courtesy of a towering home run to right-center by Mike Costello.

Pub Date: 4/17/99

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