After seven tries over 19 years, Eastern Tech is finally going to the state championship game.
Junior pitcher Jordan Cargile made it happen, tossing a three-hitter to lead the Mavericks to a 6-1 victory over Damascus in a Class 3A state semifinal Tuesday at Bachman Sports Complex in Glen Burnie.
Eastern Tech coach Jack Meyers and his players became obsessed with reaching the final, especially after losing to Linganore in extra innings, 4-3, the state semifinals last year.
“We have been thinking about this all year long,” Meyers said. “After every game, we have said, ‘We have to get to states, we have to get to states.’”
Advancing to the championship is the good news.
The bad news? Eastern Tech (21-0) will play five-time defending state champion Northern, of Calvert County, Saturday at 1 p.m in College Park.
Northern (22-0) is ranked No. 1 in the country by MaxPreps and has won a state-record 75 consecutive games.
But Meyers makes it clear the Mavericks won’t be intimidated.
“We don’t care,” Meyers said of the rankings. “If we play up to our potential, we can beat anybody, anytime, any day. That’s our philosophy.”
Eastern Tech took control against Damascus (16-4) in the early innings, scoring one run in the one and second and four more in the third.
Meyers’ daughter Lindsay (3-for-4, RBI), Brook Samios-UY (3-for-4, triple) and Jenn January (1-for-3, 3 RBIs) led the Mavericks’ 10-hit attack.
Brook Samios-UY opened the game with a triple and scored on Keri Klimko’s looping single over a drawn-in infield.
The Mavericks made it 2-0 in the second when January drove in Lindsay Meyers on a sacrifice fly to center field.
Then, Eastern Tech pushed across four runs in the third to chase senior pitcher Stephanie Ray, who surrendered three earned runs on seven hits. She struck out three and walked two.
January keyed the fourth with a two-run single.
Cargile (21-0, 0.75 ERA) got stronger as the game went on and retired 14 of the last 16 Hornets. She fanned six and walked one.
“Jordan just buckled down,” Jack Meyers said. “She got stronger and stronger with her off-speed stuff. She was pitching up and down and in and out. She didn’t throw that many fastballs.
Lansdowne falls in Class 2A state semifinal
Catoctin banged out 15 hits and rolled to a 16-1 victory over Lansdowne in a Class 2A state semifinal at Bachman Sports Complex in Glen Burnie in a game shortened to 4 ½ innings because of the 10-run mercy rule.
Courtney Clemons went 3-for-3 with four RBIs and junior Kristy Erfurdt homered and had four RBIs to led the attack.
Freshman pitcher Rhiannna Driue (10-1, 2.72 ERA) gave up three hits and struck out six batters over four innings to as the Cougars, of Frederick County, improved to 21-2.
Lansdowne pitcher Audrey Melcher took the loss to drop to 10-7. Melcher, Channing Long and Kayla Welsh collected hits for Lansdowne (12-8), which was making its fourth straight state semifinal appearance.
Melcher, Channing Long and Kayla Welsh collected hits for Lansdowne (12-8), which was makings its fourth straight state semifinal appearance.