David Dix's second home run of the game lifted Hereford to a 2-1 Baltimore County 2A-1A league victory Saturday at defending league champion Eastern Tech.
The win over last year's Class 2A state runner-up moved the Bulls (10-3 overall, 8-1 league) into sole possession of first place with games remaining against Western Tech and Owings Mills (8-4, 5-2).
Bulls right-hander Steven Schultz (1-1) went the distance for his first victory, striking out eight and allowing three hits and no walks. Of Schultz, who threw 65 strikes in 86 pitches, coach Todd Hartshorn said: "It's the best game I've seen him pitch in the three years I've worked with him."
Hereford, which earlier had beaten the Mavericks in a non-league game, had led 1-0 before Eastern Tech's Sam Ashton sent the game into extra innings with a bases-empty home run in the bottom of the seventh.
Catonsville's No. 7 softball team will get a chance to defend its Baltimore County championship after clinching the Class 4A-3A division title with Friday's 4-2 win over Towson.
The Comets, who won the first county softball title in school history last season, are 12-0 overall and 10-0 in the 4A-3A division thanks in large part to sophomore pitcher Amanda Fefel.
Fefel, a second-team All-Metro pick last season after leading the Comets to the state Class 2A title game as a freshman, has a 9-0 record and a 0.66 ERA. She has struck out 130 batters in 64 innings.
In addition, Fefel is the team's leading hitter, batting cleanup with a .605 average, 27 RBIs and six home runs.
Against Towson, Fefel had a perfect game going into the sixth inning when the Generals' Julie Cavanaugh led off with a single. One out later, Kurisha Hoffman hit a home run.
Those, however, were the only two hits the Generals would get as Fefel struck out 15 batters.
For the Comets, Malia Devenney went 4-for-4 with two RBIs while Tia Devincent drove in one run. Mallorie Clary was 2-for-4 with two runs scored.
Rained out yesterday, the Comets will try to put the finishing touch on an unbeaten 4A-3A season when they play host to Woodlawn in their division finale this afternoon at 3:45.
In the county title game scheduled for May 12, coach Bill Nelson's Comets, who have seven underclassmen on the roster, are headed for a rematch with Lansdowne, the Class 2A-1A division winner. The two teams met on March 24 with the Comets taking a 5-3 victory.
IAAM tees it up
Golf is not a sport sanctioned by the Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland, but that has not stopped a few area private and parochial schools from participating in a short, informal season on the links.
Notre Dame Prep, St. Paul's, Roland Park, the Institute of Notre Dame, Seton Keough and Bryn Mawr field teams. About 120 girls signed up for the three-week season with NDP's team drawing more than 50 girls.
Play began Thursday when NDP beat Roland Park in a match consisting of three nine-hole, two-player, best-ball competitions.
The "league" came together three years ago after Lynnie Cook, the executive director of the Baltimore Municipal Golf Corporation, decided there should be more opportunities for girls to play golf and approached officials from the IAAM member schools.
"The purpose was to get girls participating in a sport that's a life sport and that they can carry over into their professional careers," said Cook.
Cook said he would like to see golf become an official IAAM sport, but, for now, he is happy just to see so much interest.
The season will conclude with a tournament on May 19 and 20 at Mount Pleasant and Pine Ridge golf courses.
Public school wrestlers will be permitted to exclude their worst of three regular-season invitational tournaments that usually count toward regional seeding points rather than having to use all three as mandated previously, according to state tournament director Duke Beattie.
The move, which goes into effect for the 2004-05 season, was arrived at during the annual meeting of the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association's nine-member wrestling committee in March. It is also meant to prevent teams which lose a tournament because of snow or inclement weather from being at a "seeding disadvantage," Beattie said.
Seniors win approval
A proposal to allow seniors to play in two all-state games was passed over the weekend at the Maryland State Athletic Directors Conference in Ocean City.
"It now goes to the [state board of control] and will likely be approved," said Ned Sparks, the executive director of the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association.
Under current MPSSAA regulations, athletes are allowed to play in one all-star game when their high school eligibility ends. The two-games rule would become effective in all sports for the 2004-05 school year.
Sun staff writer Pat O'Malley contributed to this article.