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away from a state ti­tle.

“They’re a team that never gives up. Each of the last four years, I think, three or four years, they’ve beat us, and we’ve come back and elim­i­nated them,” Elk­ton man­ager Bill Lor­man said. “They’re a pesky team, and they took ad­van­tage of our mis­takes to­day.”

Tal­bot was the first team to stum­ble, though. Start­ing right-handed pitcher Bran­don Latham, who got the win the pre­vi­ous day in a 14-0 blowout of District 2 rep­re­sen­ta­tive Fred­er­ick, walked four bat­ters in the top of the first; the last one, a two-out pass to An­drew Goudeaux, forced in An­drew Lor­man with the game’s first run. Latham got out of the jam by punch­ing the next hit­ter out.

Tal­bot an­swered in the bot­tom of the in­ning in a sim­i­lar vein. Walks to Jaden Cas­sell, Lo­gan Bail­lif, and Kee­gan Bentz loaded the bases with two outs, and Elk­ton starter Paul Lay­ton then hit Nick Christo­pher with a pitch, ty­ing the game.

Elk­ton put two more across in the top of the sec­ond, a passed ball bring­ing in Austin Goudeaux, and Troy Cher­waty steal­ing home to make it 3-1.

Tal­bot re­sponded — some­thing it did in all four in­nings in which Elk­ton scored Sun­day. Ash­ton Echter­nach drew a lead­off walk, even­tu­ally com­ing home on a de­layed­steal play to make it 3-2.

Elk­ton stretched its lead to 5-2 in the top of the third. An­drew Simp­son, hit by a pitch to start the in­ning, and An­drew Goudeaux, who walked a mo­ment later, even­tu­ally came home on an Aaron Crow­ley sac­ri­fice fly, and then an­other de­layed-steal play.

De­spite the three-run deficit, Tal­bot’s mo­rale was on the up­swing.

“I think with the ex­tra base run­ners — there was a lot of walks, a lot of hit-byp­itches, in the game, both sides — I think the kids just had to con­vince them­selves that they had the home-field ad­van­tage, you know, home team, bat­ting last,” Tal­bot man­ager Al­bert Pritch­ett said. “We had plenty of pitch­ing lined up, no mat­ter who it was. We have about six to seven guys that can throw well for us.

“We picked a cou­ple that we were will­ing to... use, and we picked a few guys that we were will­ing to save for to­mor­row,” Pritch­ett said. “I think you could feel the kids start­ing to be­lieve, de­spite the tough start to the game, down 5-2, I think there was a be­lief that, ‘Hey, we can still do some­thing, we can still win this game.’”

Latham’s grounder to short, start­ing the home third, was thrown away, giv­ing Tal-


Elk­ton starter Paul Lay­ton de­liv­ers dur­ing the sec­ond in­ning of Sun­day’s state Se­nior League tour­na­ment game against Tal­bot.

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