Towson calmly advances, 8-1

Catonsville, elements don't faze lefty McFadden, who gets 4-hitter in North win

Class 2A baseball

May 15, 2002|By Lem Satterfield | Lem Satterfield,SUN STAFF

Neither an early wind that whipped loose sand into the air nor a brief mid-game downpour could stop Towson's Jonathan McFadden from achieving yesterday's goal.

The sophomore left-hander struck out six, allowed four hits and walked six in an 8-1 victory over host Catonsville in a Class 2A North Region baseball quarterfinal played in tumultuous conditions.

"I just focused on throwing strikes, changing speeds and keeping the ball low," said McFadden (3-2), who kept it simple by using a changeup and a fastball even while the elements raged around him. He escaped a bases-loaded jam in the fourth inning with a strikeout.

"He had great touch," said Towson coach Bill Yosca. "Nothing bothered him."

The Generals supported McFadden with nine hits, led by Nathan Beck (2-for-4, with two doubles and three runs) and Chris Jones (2-for-4, with a triple and two RBIs). John Karsos doubled in a run and scored once for the Generals (13-5), who next visit Poly at 4 p.m. today.

The Generals' regular-season meeting with Poly (18-0) was cancelled due to a scheduling difficulty, but Beck said that his team is emotionally charged for the Engineers.

"We were supposed to play them, but they thought it was supposed to happen at their place, and we thought it was supposed to happen at ours," said Beck, who scored a run in the sixth on Brian Shea's sacrifice fly. "One of their guys has told me they're going to gain respect by beating us, but we're ready to play our best."

That was evident against Catonsville (14-6), which led 1-0 on a run-scoring single by Justin Davis in the third. But the Generals tied the score with a run in the top of the fourth, and led 3-1 on run-scoring singles by Steve Skeen and Dan Calloway in the fifth.

"We came out and swung the bats this time, and we didn't against them the last time," Jones said. "We were fired up for them this time, and that was the difference."

The Generals are on a mission to win their first regional title since 2000, when they completed the season with the school's first baseball state championship. Towson was eliminated in the first round of last year's playoffs, however, losing in extra innings to Owings Mills.

It must first get past two-time Baltimore City champion Poly, which routed Edmondson, 13-3, yesterday.

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