Hammond softball sheds Centennial hex

High Schools

Spring sports


The Hammond softball team hadn't scored a run against No. 7 Centennial in 13-plus innings this season.

Trailing by a run and down to their final out yesterday, the Golden Bears enjoyed a breakthrough that was timely and dramatic.

Center fielder Jen Lozier kept the game alive with a single and first baseman Lindsey Frost followed with a double to tie the game in the seventh inning before the Golden Bears scored four more runs in the eighth for a character-building 5-1 upset of the Eagles.

With the loss, Centennial (14-3) ends up sharing the Howard County title with Long Reach, which closed out the regular season with a 3-1 win over Glenelg as both teams finished with 14-2 league marks.

After being blanked, 1-0, at Centennial earlier in the season and then having to scratch across a run in the seventh, the Bears (13-4, 11-4) splurged in the eighth inning with left fielder Andrea Brown hitting the run-scoring single that proved to be the game-winner and pitcher Stephanie Speierman adding a two-run double for insurance to seal the win.

Speierman limited Centennial to one hit, a double from shortstop Michelle Grap that gave the Eagles a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the sixth.

"We have seniors on this team who had never beaten Centennial and they've had sisters before them who never did either, so it goes back a pretty far ways," said Hammond coach Dave Boteler. "Losing to them 1-0 the first time - we knew we could play with them and then we were able to finally get over the hump. To beat one of the elite teams is huge for our confidence."

Third baseman Madison Whorton had two singles and drove in the Bears' fifth run.

No. 6 Severna Park 8, No. 3 Northeast 4 -- Catcher Megan McNabb's grand slam highlighted a five-run fifth inning as Severna Park advanced to Thursday's 5:15 p.m. Anne Arundel County championship game at Randazzo Park, where the Falcons will meet top-ranked Chesapeake (18-1, 14-1). Kaila Jenkins (15-4) pitched a three-hitter for her 63rd career win, one shy of the county record set by 1989 Northeast grad Jennifer Grinath. The defending county champion Falcons (16-4) were 13-3 in league play; the Eagles (15-4) finished 12-4 in the county.


No. 1 Centennial 6, Hammond 1 -- Scott Swinson threw a two-hitter as the Eagles completed the first undefeated regular season in Howard County history at 20-0. Swinson, a George Washington-bound right-hander, lost a bid for a no-hitter with one out in the sixth when he gave up both hits and a run. Swinson (6-0) struck out nine and walked two.

No. 7 Chesapeake 12, Southern 1 -- Chris Moore (6-0) pitched a five-hitter as the Cougars (15-4, 13-3) nosed out Severna Park for the final berth in Thursday's 7:15 p.m. Anne Arundel County final at Joe Cannon Stadium vs. No. 4 Arundel (16-3, 14-1).

No. 8 Severna Park 3, Northeast 1 -- Britton Quayle and Sammy Sheckells combined on a six-hitter as the Falcons (15-4, 12-4) defeated the Eagles (9-10, 8-8).

Boys lacrosse

No.5 McDonogh 11, No. 6 Loyola 6 -- Andrew Feinberg had four goals and four assists and Tim Brandau scored three times as the defending Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference champion drilled the Dons in a quarterfinal at Homewood Field. The Holmes brothers, Bryn and Curtis, combined to win 11 of 17 faceoffs for the Eagles (14-4), and Tyler Fiorito made 10 saves. McDonogh will face No. 2 Gilman (12-4) in the semifinals Thursday at 5 p.m. The Greyhounds defeated the Eagles earlier in the season, 9-8, in overtime. "I attribute this to senior leadership," said Feinberg, a junior, whose team lost just once last year, to Gilman. "When Bryn Holmes gets that first ground ball, that's where it all starts. From there, we just hustle." Mike Kimmel had three goals and an assist for Loyola (14-5).

No. 3 Severn 6, No. 4 St. Paul's 5 -- Brian Phipps had a season-high 21 saves and attackman Nick Elsmo had five assists as the Admirals (14-10) earned a berth in Thursday's 7 p.m. semifinal against top-ranked Boys' Latin (19-0). Mark Staines held his own against faceoff ace Austin Boykin of the Crusaders (16-5), losing six of 14, and the Admirals held St. Paul's playmaker Cryder DiPietro without a goal or an assist. "Our defense limited the close shots, and made good check calls on the crease," said the Maryland-bound Phipps, whose Admirals are in their first playoff since 2004. "We had a Sunday morning practice, our best of the year, and we came in fired up and focused."

Sun reporters Pat O'Malley and Lem Satterfield contributed to this article.

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