Boone's hits, throw lead Westminster to 6-5 win

Catcher's doubles plate 4

Liberty rally falls short


High Schools

April 23, 2004|By Jeff Seidel | Jeff Seidel,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Westminster catcher Dusty Boone, returning to form after missing about two weeks with a sprained ankle, made Liberty feel some pain yesterday.

Boone drove in four runs with a pair of two-run doubles and made a clutch defensive play in the seventh inning that helped Westminster hold off visiting Liberty for a 6-5 victory in a Carroll County game.

Boone sprained his left ankle earlier in the season, and the pain changed the senior from being a switch-hitter to batting only right-handed.

The senior has five hits in the three games since his return, including three doubles in the past two games. He went 2-for-3 in Wednesday's 1-0 loss to Thomas Johnson but was angry about striking out at a key time in the sixth.

But Boone bounced back with a two-run double in the first to tie yesterday's game at 2 and another two-run double in the fourth, that one giving Westminster (8-5) the lead for good at 6-4. He finished 2-for-4 overall.

"I've been on for a little while now," Boone said. "I hope it continues."

Boone also made a key play in the seventh as Liberty (10-2) was trying to rally against freshman reliever Brett Harman, who threw the final three innings. The Lions had one on with none out when Shawn Houck, trying to sacrifice, dropped a nice bunt in front of the plate.

Boone pounced on the ball and fired a quick strike to second for the forceout. Sean Kupfer then did sacrifice before Harman sturck out Dave Tart for the game's final out on a knee-buckling 3-2 curve.

"I'd have been happy just to get an out at first there," Westminster coach Bryan Harman said. "But he had the play in front of him, and he made a great play."

Liberty coach Erik Barnes wasn't quite as happy. The Lions had 13 hits but left 10 runners on base, seven in scoring position.

"We were in that game, surprisingly," Barnes said. "I just wasn't pleased with our performance today."

The game didn't count in the county standings, because the teams will meet again later.

Liberty took a 2-0 lead in the first on Brett Caplan's two-run single. Boone's double tied it in the bottom half before Wade Keenan gave the Lions a 3-2 lead in the second with a solo homer.

But the Owls took the lead again in the second on Cody Mruk's two-run single. Houck tied the game at 4 for Liberty with an RBI single in the third, setting up another Boone two-run double. Josh Vittek sliced the lead to 6-5 with a sacrifice fly in the sixth.


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