Archbishop Curley baseball coach Brooks Norris and his players had waited all season for this moment — the chance to play at Oriole Park at Camden Yards in the third annual President’s Cup championship game on Saturday.
And the Friars made the most of the opportunity, beating No. 5 Gilman, 11-8.
Curley junior left-hander Zack Ridgely keyed the win, giving up one earned run and four hits in four innings. He struck out three batters and walked two, and contributed offensively with two hits and a run scored.
“We said, ‘We are going to win the game,’ ” Ridgely said. “It’s a true honor to be playing at Camden Yards. You watch the Orioles play here every day. It’s just a thing you wouldn’t believe and a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”
Curley (8-5) roughed up five Gilman pitchers for 12 hits and nine walks.
Friars senior outfielder Luke Skovira went 2-for-2 with a double and two RBIs, and senior third baseman Tyler Coleman had two hits and an RBI.
The Friars chased Gilman starter Patrick Gallagher, a junior right-hander, after two innings. He gave up four earned runs, five hits and three walks.
“We threw our fourth or fifth starter,” said Gilman coach Larry Sheets, who didn’t use any of his top three pitchers. “That’s the tough part of this game. You really wish it would be [a Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference] game and mean something. Our pitching was absolutely horrible. We walked 10 and gave up 12 hits. That’s 22 base runners in seven innings.”
Curley jumped out to a 9-0 lead in the first three innings, scoring two runs in the first, two in the second and five in the third.
Two Gilman pitchers issued four consecutive walks to start the third, and Skovira and Ridgely highlighted it with run-scoring singles.
Ridgely, who is 1-2 with a 3.10 ERA this season, pitched three scoreless innings before giving up two runs in the fourth on two hits and a walk.
“I think he is one of the top pitchers in the area, if not the top pitcher,” Norris said. “I think the second half of last year showed that. He’s been dealing with a little bit of an injury this season. He had some kind of staph infection or boil underneath his arm. That kind of set him back early in the year. He’s 100 percent [now].”
Norris used three other pitchers after Ridgely left the game, and Gilman hit them well.
Junior right fielder Gavin Sheets, the Gilman coach’s son, was 3-for-4 with an RBI in the loss, and sophomore center fielder Danny Blair went 2-for-3 with two RBIs, a triple and walked twice.
Gilman scored one run in the fifth, four in the sixth and another in the seventh.
Two baserunning errors in the seventh inning, which led to two outs, cost the Greyhounds from potentially scoring more. Curley junior center fielder Nick Carroll ended the game by throwing out Luke McNamara when he went for an extra base on Blair’s single, which scored Gallagher.
Archbishop Curley 11 Gilman 8
Curley — 11 12 1
Gilman — 8 10 1
Ridgely, Day (5), Remeikis (5), Sutton (6) and Ingham, Hamel; Gallagher, Locke (3), Schelberg (3), Tilley (5) and Blair (7). 2B: C-Skovira; G-Sheets, Wey. 3B: G-Blair.