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.