Cascio's touch makes Poly shine more, 12-2

8 strikeouts, 4-for-4 hitting spark rout of Patterson

Baseball

May 02, 2002|By Lem Satterfield | Lem Satterfield,SUN STAFF

A couple of weeks ago, defending Baltimore City baseball champion Poly had to overcome an eight-run deficit to beat A Division rival Patterson. But in yesterday's rematch at Patterson, the visiting Engineers easily routed the Clippers, 12-2, in a game that was called after five innings.

The difference?

Corey Cascio.

Not only did the second-team All-Baltimore City/County pitcher strike out eight batters, the junior also led a 14-hit attack, going 4-for-4 with two doubles, a triple and four RBIs. He scored the game's final run that prompted the 10-run rule.

"Both teams hit the ball well last time," said Patterson coach Keith Robinson. "But they're a dominant team with Cascio pitching. From the first inning, he shut us down."

It was the 32nd victory in the past 35 games for the 15th-ranked Engineers (14-0, 13-0 league), who can complete an undefeated league season for their second straight conference crown with wins over City on Friday and in Tuesday's doubleheader against Walbrook. Poly plays a non-league game Monday against Towson of Baltimore County, which won the Class 2A state title two years ago.

"This could be the start of our program gaining some respect," said Poly coach Chris Vaccaro. "But then, we always tell our kids they have something to prove - mostly to themselves."

Cascio set the tone from the start, striking out two of the first three batters and getting the third on a comebacker. He struck out the side in the third inning, but yielded an RBI single to Todd Adkins in the fourth and threw a wild pitch that allowed another run in the same inning. Patterson's Jason Sharnas also doubled.

"Hitting-wise, it's my best game, but I can't pitch without a good team behind me," said Cascio, whose 6-0 record includes 73 strikeouts and a one-hit, 12-0 victory over Mervo among his two shutouts.

"He hung the ball up a couple of times, and they got hits," said Poly pitching coach Corey Goodwin. "But his fastball, changeup, curveball - everything worked. Plus, he knows how to rely on his defense."

The Engineers committed no errors and, offensively, got hits from all but one player in the lineup.

Todd Jacob was 3-for-4 with a double and two RBIs. Steve Christianson doubled twice, scored twice and had an RBI. Alexis Leight-Pappas had a two-run single and scored twice. Brandon Roane and Anthony Fitzgerald each had run-scoring hits, and both Evan Curbeam and Austin Carter went 1-for-3 with a run scored.

"We were pretty pumped up for this game," said Jacob, the catcher. "Hitting this well in a big game shows where we are."

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