On same day, two no-hitters for Sabers

Baltimore County athletic coordinator to receive award

Notebook

March 28, 2007|By Katherine Dunn and Lem Satterfield | Katherine Dunn and Lem Satterfield,Sun Reporters

Every spring comes with a smattering of no-hitters in area softball and baseball, but last week, Southwestern pitchers Shannon Bonnett and Kelley Phillips did something rare - they threw no-hitters on the same day.

Bob Wade, coordinator of athletics for Baltimore City Public Schools, said he cannot remember a softball pitcher and a baseball pitcher from the same city school throwing no-hitters on the same day.

Bonnett, a right-handed sophomore, threw the fourth no-hitter of her softball career, striking out 14 in a five-inning, 15-1 win over Forest Park last Wednesday.

Across the field at Southwestern, Phillips, a left-handed freshman, struck out 15 in his Sabers baseball debut, a five-inning, 17-7 victory over Samuel L. Banks.

Last season, Bonnett was one of a handful of talented pitchers who came into the city softball league. She finished her freshman season with 164 strikeouts in 83 innings.

"I think her speed is the same," Sabers coach Anthony DeVita said, "but this year, she's a lot more accurate and she's really worked on her off-speed pitch."

In Wednesday's win, Bonnett got help at the plate from catcher LaFay Thates, who had a home run and two singles, and first baseman Tabitha Cooper, who went 3-for-4 with two doubles.

Phillips, a Little League veteran, hit two doubles for the Sabers, who gave up seven unearned runs because of seven errors and four runs that scored on passed balls.

Ramone Alaqula drove in two runs to break a tie in the second inning. Donald Green also drove in two with a double and Brandon Hopkins smacked a grand slam.

While baseball coach Terry Leverett is quick to point out that the Sabers remain fairly inexperienced overall and that they play in the city's weaker conference, he said he was pleasantly surprised by Phillips' ability.

"He was telling me, `I can pitch. I can play baseball. I can't wait for baseball,' " Leverett said. "When the weather was really bad, I took him down the hallway and I was totally surprised. He's got a pretty good fastball and curveball and he can stay in the strike zone."

Belinko honored

Baltimore County's athletic coordinator, Ron Belinko, has been chosen by the Maryland State Athletic Directors' Association as this year's recipient of the National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association State Award of Merit.

Slated to receive his award in April during the MSADA's conference banquet, Belinko has, among his various duties, coached wrestling at Overlea and Eastern Tech for 10 years through 1979, and served on the National Federation of State High School Associations' boys lacrosse committee since 1999.

Belinko has served as the chairman of the NFSHSA's lacrosse committee since 2003.

Poly packs punch

The Poly baseball team is off to a good start on its quest to win a ninth straight Baltimore City League title.

Senior right-hander Brian Ellis and junior center fielder Troy King are among six returning starters to an Engineers squad that is 3-0 heading into today's game with visiting Edmondson.

katherine.dunn@baltsun.com

lem.satterfield@baltsun.com

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