10 walks help send St. Paul's to 8-4 defeat

DeMatha breaks 4-4 tie with four-run seventh

Baseball

High Schools

March 30, 2004|By Pat O'Malley | Pat O'Malley,SUN STAFF

A pitcher's worst enemy is ball four, and a trio of St. Paul's pitchers issued 10 passes on the way to an 8-4 loss to DeMatha of Hyattsville yesterday in Brooklandville.

It was a nonleague matchup of the Baltimore area's No. 2 team, St. Paul's, and the Washington area's top-ranked team. Neither St. Paul's ace Steve Johnson nor DeMatha ace Brett Cecil was available to pitch.

Somehow the host Crusaders (11-4) managed to stay in the game despite the walks. It was a 4-4 game going into the seventh, when the Stags (5-1) scored four times to win it, 8-4, with a two-run triple by Derrick McPhearson the big blow.

"Our pitchers had the control problems, but overall did a good job against a really tough hitting team," said St. Paul's All-Metro catcher Chad Durakis.

"Competing with teams like DeMatha without our No. 1 [Johnson] going just shows how far our program has come in the last couple years. The game was there to take."

DeMatha chased St. Paul's starter Nathan Curd in the fifth, when the junior right-hander walked Ryan Stamp with the bases loaded to make it 4-2 DeMatha. It was the fourth walk of the inning for Curd, who gave up five hits and struck out three.

Freshman right-hander Lou Mari replaced Curd and struck out McPhearson with a nasty curve to end the inning. The Crusaders tied it in the fifth on a towering home run to left-center by Johnson and an RBI double by Vic Meyer.

Johnson led off the seventh for the Crusaders with a looper to left that Rian Smith, the son of longtime Baltimore Presstman Cardinals coach Reggie Smith, made a diving catch on.

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