Wright escapes Bobcats' rallies, 9-8

Mustangs jump out, 7-0

Bel Air loses 1st in county

Baseball

May 08, 1999|By John W. Stewart | John W. Stewart,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

C. Milton Wright jumped on visiting Bel Air for seven runs in the first two innings, then blunted late rallies for a 9-8 victory in a pivotal Harford County League game yesterday.

The victory by No. 11-ranked Wright boosted it to 11-6 overall and 5-2 in county play, while No. 14 Bel Air lost for only the second time in 17 starts, slipping to 6-1 in the county.

Bel Air's loss opened the door for No. 4 Fallston (12-2), which defeated Edgewood yesterday, 14-10, to tie for the lead at 6-1. The top three will play final league games Monday: Edgewood at C. Milton Wright, Joppatowne at Bel Air, and Fallston at North Harford.

Designated hitter Scott Guzewich keyed yesterday's early blitz against Bel Air starting pitcher Andy Wolfe, driving in two runs with a triple in the first and hitting run-producing single in the second. He later tripled and walked to complete a perfect day.

In two innings, the Mustangs collected seven of their 10 hits and seven of their nine runs, aided by shoddy Bel Air fielding that included three errors.

"We've had some innings like those before, but we have been able to overcome them," said Bel Air coach Mike Ennis, whose Bobcats are enjoying their best season since the 1996 state title year.

"Occasionally, we fall apart. It just kind of snowballs."

The home team got what turned out to be the winning run in the fourth inning, after Wolfe had a 1-2-3 third. Nate Weigl, hitting more than .500, walked, and Sean Bantner drilled a ball into right-center that he ran into a home run.

Then Guzewich tripled, and Will Little replaced Wolfe on the mound, striking out Jesse Schoendienst. Little worked the last 2 1/3 innings, giving up just one hit.

Bel Air got some help from Wright in making a game pf it.

Chris Reynolds singled in a run in the first, but the Bobcats trailed 9-1 after four innings and 9-3 after five.

The visitors chased Wright's starting pitcher, Mike Crone, in a five-run sixth. Two hits, two walks, and two Mustang errors did the one-out damage. Kyle George, another .500-plus hitter, got the big blow, a three-run shot through shortstop.

Reynolds doubled home George, Gavin Martin relieved Crone, and got out of it, retiring the next two batters.

Bel Air threatened in the seventh, putting two on with two out, but third baseman Steve Getz, who had just made an error, took a ground ball and threw out Jason Tabelings by a step.

"Crone has been pitching well -- he probably has more innings than any of the others," said C. Milton Wright coach Bob Rudolph. "But for two errors in the sixth, he would have been out of that inning without allowing a run.

"Martin did a good job, too. He had a sore arm early but has come back in the last week to pitch in wins over Havre de Grace and Harford Tech."

Pub Date: 5/08/99

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