McDonough falls short in re­gion fi­nal

Lar­son fans 12 in los­ing cause in 1A North ti­tle game

Maryland Independent - - Sports - By TED BLACK tblack@somd­news.com Twit­ter: tblack­somds1

BEL AIR — On a day when both teams got stel­lar out­ings from their start­ing pitch­ers, the Pat­ter­son Mill High School base­ball team came up with the timely hits that typ­i­cally de­cide close games in de­feat­ing McDonough, 4-1, in the Class 1A North Re­gion cham­pi­onship game on Fri­day af­ter­noon.

Rams se­nior ace David Lar­son was on top of his game from the out­set, strik­ing out the side in the first in­ning and fin­ish­ing the day with 12 strike­outs in six in­nings of work. Lar­son, who is headed to Worces­ter Polytech­nic In­sti­tute in Mas­sachusetts to play base­ball and ma­jor in com­puter sci­ence, limited Pat­ter­son Mill to four runs on five hits, but a pair of walks came back to haunt him.

“It was a heck of a se­nior sea­son,” Lar­son said. “I couldn’t have asked for any­thing more. It was great to be part of this team. We had the chance to play in some big games the last two years. We had our chances to­day. They came up with the big hits when they needed them and we didn’t.”

“He prob­a­bly could have kept them to a run or two if it wasn’t for the walks and the passed balls,” McDonough head coach Mike Ly­don said of Lar­son’s fi­nal out­ing. “It seemed like ev­ery time they got a run­ner on they were able to move him over and come up with the timely hits. We had some scor­ing chances to­day, but we could not get the clutch hits.”

Part of the over­all theme of the oc­ca­sion un­folded in the bot­tom of the sec­ond in­ning. Pat­ter­son Mill first base­man Ja­cob Michael worked Lar­son for a one-out walk, then Nick Cress de­liv­ered a triple to right-cen­ter field for the game’s first run. Cress then scored when des­ig­nated hit­ter Steve Spencer grounded out to short to lift the Huskies to a 2-0 lead.

Pat­ter­son Mill (20-3), last year’s 2A North Re­gion cham­pion, ex­tended the lead to 3-0 in the home half of the fifth. Spencer drew a lead­off walk, stole sec­ond base and scored on a single up the mid­dle by third base­man Jace Valle-Shaw. That would be all the run sup­port that Huskies hurler Austin Koehn would need on Fri­day.

McDonough (18-6) fi­nally ended Koehn’s shutout bid by scor­ing an un­earned run in the top of the sixth. Se­nior first base­man Damien Price was hit by a pitch then went to third when Trevor Drum­mond reached on a throw­ing er­ror by Cress. With none out and run­ners on first and third, catcher Pey­ton My­ers plated Price with a sac­ri­fice fly to left.

Koehn, who limited the Rams at­tack to one un­earned run on one hit, one walk and one hit bat­ter, fanned three of the last five bat­ters he faced on Fri­day. Pat­ter­son Mill added an in­sur­ance run in the sixth when Max El­liott beat out an in­field single, took sec­ond on a throw­ing er­ror by Lar­son, third on a wild pitch and scored on a single past short­stop by Michael.

“Austin is only a sopho­more and for him to keep that team to only one run on one hit and go seven in­nings in just 86 pitches showed a lot of ma­tu­rity,” Pat­ter­son Mill head coach Matt Rose­land said. “We only lose three se­niors. We’re young, but most of these kids have been to­gether the last three years. This was our fourth re­gion ti­tle in the last five years.”

McDonough ended Koehn’s bid for a no-hit­ter in the fifth when sec­ond base­man Brant But­ler led off with a single to cen­ter, was sac­ri­fice bunted over to sec­ond by Hunter Sweeney and then took third on a ground­out. Ini­tially But­ler was awarded home by the home plate um­pire cour­tesy of a Koehn balk, but af­ter con­fer­ring with the field um­pire the balk was negated and But­ler was sent back to third and stranded there when se­nior Jonathan Fisher popped up to short.

STAFF PHOTO BY TED BLACK

McDonough se­nior pitcher David Lar­son fires to the plate on Fri­day af­ter­noon at Pat­ter­son Mill. Lar­son al­lowed four runs on five hits and two walks and fanned 12 bat­ters in a los­ing cause as the Rams were up­ended by the Huskies 4-1 in the 1A North Re­gion fi­nal.

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