Westminster baseball team aims to send coach out on top

Harman to retire at end of season

undefeated Owls rout Southwestern, 35-0

May 16, 2011|By Todd Karpovich, Special to The Baltimore Sun

The last high school baseball team that Westminster's Bryan Harman coaches might be his best.

The fourth-ranked Owls surged through the regular season undefeated, earning the top seed in Class 4A North. Harman, who spent 12 years at Liberty and 10 at Westminster, wants to spend more time watching his sons play college baseball next season.

His oldest son, Brett, is a senior at Maryland and was the Terrapins' top pitcher before undergoing Tommy John elbow ligament-replacement surgery before the season. He expects to return next season as a redshirt senior. Harman's younger son, Cody, is a senior at Westminster and will play at Frederick Community College next year.

"Maybe things happen for a reason," Harman said. "Brett, with the Tommy John, will be in his final year next year. If he goes back to where he was, he was the Friday night guy. Cody's going off to play ball at FCC, and I'd like to see both of them play. I'd like to have the opportunity to do that. That's the reason why I'm getting out. I have two sons, and the time with them is something I cherish."

Longtime assistant Guy Stull is also retiring at the end of the season.

The Owls improved to 19-0 on Monday with a 35-0 victory over Southwestern in the second round of the regional playoffs. Westminster has displayed power throughout its lineup all season, and its first state title since 2007 is within sight.

"Teamwise, this is the best team that I've had," Harman said. "We won the state title in '07. That was a good team, a very tightknit team, but they went into the playoffs at 10-8. This team, from top to bottom, is a pretty good team."

Cody Harman has been a catalyst for the Owls this season. Entering the playoffs, he was batting .480 and had thrown out seven consecutive runners trying to steal on him. He said the team has maintained a sole focus on winning a state championship.

"I just think it's going to be a really big accomplishment this year if we go all the way," he said. "Our hopes are high, and we have a really good team. The pressure is on us, but we've come through so far. We come out ready to play. We practice hard. All the hard work we put in this season is starting to pay off."

Senior pitcher Brandon Taylor has been nearly flawless for Westminster, going 6-0 with a 0.40 ERA. Shortstop Brandon Nelson has also been a spark, batting .500 entering the playoffs and playing sound defense.

"We had a really good attitude this year," Nelson said. "It would be a great accomplishment to get a state title. It's a lot of pressure, but I feel we can handle it. It would be nice if we can give Coach a state title before he retires."



Deitz and Harman; Reddick, Thomas (2) and Matthews. 2B: W—Harman 2, McVerry. 3B: W—Harman. HR: W—Craig.

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