Western Charles sweeps Black Sox
Reigning CHASM champs have won eight straight
After cruising to an 11-3 victory over the Black Sox in the opening game of its Coors Charles & St. Mary’s County baseball twin-bill, the Western Charles squad had to withstand several mistakes en route to a 5-4 victory in the second game on Sunday afternoon at Rainbow Construction Field in La Plata.
Western Charles (17-4) extended its win streak to eight games by taking both games from the Black Sox (7-13) on Sunday, although the two contests hardly mirrored one another. Following a comfortable victory in the opener and then forging an early 5-0 lead in the second game, Western Charles narrowly escaped a self-inflicted collapse.
After Western Charles starter Mike Boyce went five innings, allowing four runs, one earned, the reigning CHASM champs handed the ball to veteran closer Bill DeAtley for the final two frames. In the bottom of the sixth, Tyler Croson worked DeAtley for a two-out walk and Ryan Kesecker followed with a bloop single to center, but DeAtley was spared further damage when left fielder Tyler Summers made a diving catch to rob Brett Irwin of a bloop single.
“Jason Murray, our center fielder, does a great job positioning all of us when we go out there,” said Summers, who doubled and scored in the first and had an RBI groundout in the second. “He told me to play close to the line and play in and that’s what I did. When [Irwin] hit it, I had a good jump on the ball and made the play.”
In the bottom of the seventh the Black Sox could have mounted a serious threat, but some of their troubles were also partly self-inflicted. Charles Nutter led off the inning with a single to left, but he was then picked off first. Brad Hennessy followed with a single past third, stumbled slightly when rounding the bag and was thrown out at second attempting for the extra base on another superb play by Summers.
“That play could have gone either way,” Summers said. “When he hit it, I thought he might try for second. I was able to get to the ball and turn and make a good throw to John [Kerhes] at second base and he made a great tag. It was a bangbang play and it was close.”
Black Sox left field Michael Bowie, who had a three-run double in the third and a solo homer in the fifth, promptly followed with a clean single up the middle for the Black Sox third hit of the inning. But instead of being part of a pivotal rally it was simply an afterthought as the Black Sox had already squandered two hits to start the frame on base running mistakes.
“Those are the types of games that you live for,” said Bowie, a 2010 St. John’s College High School graduate now in his third season with the Black Sox. “If you don’t love games like that one, you don’t love baseball. We could have had some more runs there, but it goes that way sometimes.”
DeAtley then induced Chase Travers to hit a bouncer toward Jason Boyd at short, but Boyd misplayed the ball and Travers reached safely. Seth Donnelly then followed by hitting another grounder to short that Boyd again mishandled —his third error of the game — loading the bases with two outs. Pinch-hitter Pernell Young then followed by hitting another grounder to short and Boyd initially bobbled it, but recovered in time to force the runner at second for the final out.
On the heels of its lopsided win in the opener, Western Charles started the second game as if it were eager for another easy tally. Summers opened the game with a double and Murray reached on an error by Nutter at first, then Boyd followed by crushing a Hennessy pitch off the fence in right center for a long two-run single.
Western Charles added a run in the second on a groundout by Summers that plated Kerhes, who opened the frame with a bloop single and the reigning CHASM champs extended the lead to 5-0 in the third when Chris Blondin belted a two-run homer field.
The Black Sox got back in the contest quickly when Boyd’s first error of the game prolonged the inning and then Brad Hennessy walked on a 3-2 pitch. Bowie then sent the first pitch from Boyce off the fence in left-center for a three-run double. Two innings later, Bowie belted an 0-1 Boyce pitch over the fence in left-center to trim the gap to 5-4 and neither team scored over the last two frames. to straightaway center
Western Charles first baseman Ricky Brady swings at a pitch from Black Sox hurler Jack Hennessy in the second game of their Charles & St. Mary’s [CHASM] baseball league doubleheader on Sunday afternoon. Western Charles won both games, 11-3, and 5-4 to extend its winning streak to eight games.