Severna Park rolls to region championship

mmorea@capgaznews.com

One out, one run and 13 minutes was all it took on Saturday for the Severna Park baseball team to wrap up the Class 4A East Region title.

That was because the Falcons did most of their work on Friday before Mother Nature decided to delay the Severna Park celebration for the second time in three years.

Ben Hollingsworth hit a grounder to first that was booted by the North Point first baseman, allowing Scott Huntley to score from third with the game-clinching run as the Falcons shut out the Eagles, 10-0 in five innings to bring the region crown back to Anne Arundel County. Leonardtown won the region in 2016, defeating Severna Park, 5-3. Prior to that, Chesapeake won the region in 2014, South River in 2013, Arundel in 2012 and the Falcons again in 2011.

"We have a lot of confidence right now. All the kids in that dugout have confidence," said Severna Park coach Eric Milton, whose team has won is last 12 games. "That's what happens when you've won 12 in a row, two losses all year. At 22-2, that confidence kind of builds and builds and builds, especially when you beat tough teams like Chesapeake three times, Arundel. You keep winning tough games, close games and important games, your confidence is going to increase with each win."

Matt Glady showed his confidence as the senior allowed one hit and three walks in four innings, striking out six before giving way to Patrick Sullivan, who worked a perfect fifth, including five pitches in the continuation which yielded a comebacker to end the frame.

"Clearly they were a team that we didn't know much about. We've heard from our scouting report things that they were an aggressive team," Glady said. "So I went out there and just got a feel for things, basically seeing what they could hit and what they weren't able to hit. I saw that they couldn't catch up to my fastball that well, so I used that predominantly and I was able to get that by them most of the time. But the defense was also great yesterday."

Conversely, the offense pounded out 10 hits in the five innings, with five coming in the seven-run second. Scott Huntley finished 2 for 2 with two runs scored and an RBI, Sam Barranco, who came off the bench to be the designated hitter, had two base hits and an RBI, Drew Jeffries also went 2 for 3 with two runs and an RBI and Jake Hallet doubled in three trips to the plate. George Lesher, Hollingsworth, Cameron Clark and Ryan Key each had an RBI as all but two batters had at least one hit or drove in a run."

"Coach put me in the lineup because he saw that I've been hitting the ball well lately so I knew that I had to produce for my team and help them out," Barranco said. "When the situation came for me, I just did what was needed. We just need to keep rolling and keep doing what we're doing. We can't take any team for granted and take one pitch at a time and one game at a time. If we do that, we'll be successful."

Facing North Region champion Howard on Tuesday at 7 p.m. at Shirley Povich Field in Bethesda, Milton will have to figure out the best nine hitters and fielders, as well as the better of a handful of pitchers to defeat a 16-7 Lions team that has won six of its last 7 games.

"We have a lot of depth and we have a lot of strength, one through nine, so that's been our strength and hopefully we keep swinging the bats well," Milton said. "There are more guys that can be playing and that could be swinging the bats. It just goes day-to-day. All the way through our lineup, any one of them can do damage."

WP: Glady. LP: Turner. 2B: SP - Hallet. RBI: SP - Key, Jeffries, Huntley, Lesher, Hollingsworth, Clark, Barranco.

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