La Plata powers past St. Mary’s in Legion baseball
Drummond’s clutch hit sends Legion baseball team to win
After not playing in over a week, La Plata Legion Post 82 started out slowly against host St. Mary’s Ridge Post 255, but the baseball team got going and ended up with a convincing 8-1 win Saturday night at Chancellor’s Run Regional Park in Great Mills.
La Plata (8-5-2 overall) snapped a 2-2 tie with a four-run fifth inning and cruised to their sixth win over its last eight games.
“We’ve had a week off so we were a little rusty early, but they swung the bats well early but right at everybody,” said La Plata assistant coach Mark Calvert who was filling in for head coach Kevin Harris. “It was a good defensive game we played. A pretty clean game, so I’m very pleased.”
“We had good pitching all game and we knew eventually we’d get some [more] runs, though we didn’t think it would be as late as the fifth inning,” said Trevor Drummond, who had the clutch hit in the fifth. “But we put a couple runs together and finished it off with some great pitching. It was an allaround good game for everyone.”
La Plata held a 2-1 lead heading into the fifth when Dylan Bell walked, Dean Kirby singled and Brett Pilkerton walked to load the bases. Brant Butler plated a run on a fielder’s choice and, with two outs, Drummond lashed a double to score two more runs and later scored on Nick Steury’s base hit.
“I was just looking for something I could drive, something gap-to-gap, something far and hard,” said Drummond, a rising senior at McDonough High
School. “[St. Mary’s pitcher Zack Stanford] gave me a knee-high pitch inside and I felt I could hit it well.”
“That will take the salt out of any team,” St. Mary’s head coach Don DeGraves said. “We left a lot of runs on before they worked us over in that inning.”
Calvert said Drummond’s hit “opened it up. That gave us two runs and then we scored two more. That was the big one because every time we play these guys it’s a tough game.”
La Plata opened the scoring in the first when Brett Pilkerton reached on a one-out infield hit and later scored on an error.
St. Mary’s tied the game in the bottom of the frame when leadoff hitter Connor Cox reached on an error, stole second and scored when Andrew Dameron lined a one-out single to left.
St. Mary’s later loaded the bases but would get
just the one run. It would also fill the bags in the second and third and had two on on the fourth but failed to push across a run. St. Mary’s was 0 for 5 with three strikeouts with the bags full and was 1 for 10 with runners in scoring position.
“I think the obvious part is we had people on base throughout the lineup,” DeGraves said, “but after they were on base we couldn’t get anything done.”
“We got a lot of base runners on and stranded a lot of them,” said Cox, a rising sophomore at Westminster College (Pa.) who reached base four times. “That’s a big problem, so obviously we have to work on that.”
La Plata added single runs in each of the sixth and seventh on an error and an RBI by Zachary Harris, respectively.
Ryan Calvert went five innings for La Plata and allowed a run on four hits,
all singles. He also struck out eight and walked five. Jerod Schmitz tossed the last two innings and struck out four, including the last three of the game.
“I wish I’d thrown a lot more strikes than I did, but it was good,” said Calvert, a rising freshman at La Plata High School who threw a steady diet of fastballs with the occasional cutter mixed in. “I just worked out of the jams. It was important [to keep going] because I knew we were going to hit at some point.”
“He threw well, he threw exceptionally hard and I think he overthrew at times and got behind at times, but overall good job,” Mark Calvert said. “He got into some tough situations but was able to get himself out of it. He was not as efficient as we’d like to see, but he had sone really good stuff and good velocity.”
Stanford gave up seven hits and walked three in five innings in his first start in almost three weeks. Hunter Rooney allowed a run on four hits and fanned four in relief.
“It was the first time in a while [I’d pitched], but it went well,” Stanford said.
DeGraves said he’s not disappointed in his team’s play.
“I think this game is typical of where we’ve been all year,” he said following a lengthy pause. “Defensively we’ve been OK, offensively we’ve come up short with some hits. We haven’t taken advantage where other clubs have, [but] I think they’re playing a good ballgame.”
“Honestly, no,” Cox said when asked if he was happy with his teams play. “We’ve made it to states the last two years and it’s been a drop-off year, but we can turn it around and we have the potential to turn it around. It’s not too late.”
La Plata’s Brett Pilkerton fouls off a pitch in the first inning of an 8-1 win over St. Mary’s in American Legion baseball on Saturday night at Chancellor’s Run Regional Park in Great Mills.
La Plata’s Ryan Calvert allowed one run on four hits, all singles, and struck out eight in five innings in an 8-1 win over St. Mary’s in American Legion baseball on Saturday night at Chancellor’s Run Regional Park in Great Mills.