Severna Park positions itself for spot in title game

Falcons edge Glen Burnie, 1-0, end county season 13-3

Softball

High School

May 11, 2004|By Glenn P. Graham | Glenn P. Graham,SUN STAFF

Chances are good the Severna Park softball team grabbed the second spot in Thursday's Anne Arundel County championship game with yesterday's win at Glen Burnie.

It seemed appropriate the final score was 1-0 and not decided until the latter innings -- a microcosm of how close the county race has been all season.

Sophomore pitcher Kaila Jenkins struck out 12 Gophers and catcher Erin O'Keefe provided the game's only big hit with a sixth-inning double that scored Kristin Wojtowycz as the No. 4 Falcons (17-3) finished the regular season with a 13-3 county mark.

With Chesapeake (17-3) wrapping up first place at 14-2, the second spot comes down to the Falcons, North County (13-4, 12-3) and Northeast (14-4, 12-3). Should North County and Northeast beat Meade and Southern, respectively, today, all three teams would finish with a 13-3 county mark and the Falcons will play on Thursday with more overall wins.

If the Falcons advance, they will have earned it the hard way. After getting past Broadneck 1-0 in eight innings on Friday, they found themselves in another tight game yesterday at No. 12 Glen Burnie.

How tight? After the Falcons finally broke through with the run in the top of the sixth, Jenkins found herself in a two-out, bases-loaded jam and down in the count, 3-0, to Glen Burnie freshman Holly Ross.

Two strikes and one foul later, Ross lined out to center fielder Shannon Warco to end the threat.

"I don't know how I got there [bases loaded, 3-0 count], but I was just thinking I've got to throw strikes," said Jenkins, who went to her fastball for the rest of the count. "And I was lucky she hit the ball right at Shannon.

"It seems like anytime, no matter who we're playing, they're giving us a hard time."

The Gophers (10-8, 9-7) had another strong performance go the other way, with senior pitcher Beth Slater matching Jenkins pitch for pitch until trouble came in the sixth. After Wojtowycz singled with one out, Slater got Jenkins to pop up for the second out, but O'Keefe hit a deep fly to right over Ross' head to bring in the game-winner.

The Gophers had their leadoff hitters on in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings, but couldn't bring any home.

"I was proud of the way my girls played, it was another solid effort," said Glen Burnie coach Bob Broccolino. "I can't ask a pitcher to pitch any better or a defense to play any better, but we have to find a way to win some of the close ones against the good teams. What I feel good about is the girls feel they can play with anyone in the county, and that's something that may not have been the case at the start of the season. The second half, we've been showing it."

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