In the first inning of Hammond's playoff game against visiting Wilde Lake, Derek Sicca drove home freshman DaVonn Griffin, who had doubled, to give the Golden Bears a 1-0 lead. After that, it was up to Sicca to make the lead hold up.
"It turns out we needed only one today, but it was a big one," first-year coach Casey Medairy said. "Derek threw another hell of a gem. At this point he's just trucking."
The senior right-hander pitched a complete-game three-hitter (9 strikeouts, 2 walks), to lead Hammond (11-7) to a 2-0 win in the opening round of the 3A East regional playoffs on Friday, May 10. The Golden Bears will visit Reservoir, which had a first-round bye, in the quarterfinal round.
In the third inning, freshman David Hutchison — Hammond's No. 2 starting pitcher — hit a two-out single to drive in Garrett Kelley for an insurance run.
"Hutch came up clutch too with that last hit for an RBI," Sicca said. "In the playoffs no runs are enough, you can never have enough runs."
As rookies, Griffin and Hutchison have both played key roles for the Golden Bears this year.
"It's been really fun just to see them come up and grow up, especially as freshmen, you normally don't see that," Sicca said. "But they've been great and really contributed to the team."
Wilde Lake (4-14) got hits from Wyatt Oler and Nick Wright (2 singles) in the loss, and a strong complete game pitching performance from junior Matt Miller (5 hits, 2 walks, 2 strikeouts).
"For the past couple of weeks we finally got all the pieces that we were looking for to come together, hitting the ball, playing defense and pitching," coach Kareem Penn said. "Matt did an excellent job."
County champion Atholton (bye), Howard (9-6 win over Centennial), Marriotts Ridge (21-0 win over Largo), Mt. Hebron (15-5 win over Annapolis), Oakland Mills (10-0 win over Long Reach) and River Hill (9-1 win over Northeast-AA) also advanced.
WL (4-14) 000 000 0 - 0
Ha (11-7) 101 000 x - 2
Miller and Mee. Sicca and Miller.
2B: Ha — Griffin.
Around the league
Howard 9, Centennial 6
The Lions fell behind early, 6-1, but stormed back with five runs in the bottom of the third to tie the game, and took a lead they would not relinquish in the bottom of the fourth.
Jake Vonella led the offense with two doubles, two runs and two RBIs, while David Wolf doubled, drove in two runs and drew two walks.
Nick Duffy and freshman Eric Greenbaum each had two hits and drove in two runs, Mark Reagan had two hits and Logan Seitz doubled.
Duffy fell behind early, allowing six earned runs on ten hits, but recovered nicely, earning the complete game victory by striking out eight and walking only one batter.
Lackey 4, Glenelg 0
Marriotts Ridge 21, Largo 0 (5 innings)
Mt. Hebron 15, Annapolis 5 (6 innings)
Fred Simard had four hits, three runs and two RBIs and Bobby Gormley hit a two-run walkoff triple to help the Vikings cruise past visiting Annapolis.
Mt. Hebron collected 12 hits and scored nine runs in the first two innings. Sam Janiszewski, Peter Turner, and Brady Smouse each drove in two runs.
Oakland Mills 10, Long Reach 0 (6 innings)
Joe Zatayz struck out ten Lightning batters and was a defensive error away from pitching an abbreviated perfect game.
Tim Miles doubled and drove in three runs, Evan Russell doubled and drove in a run, and Cody Thomas and Ben Hale each had two RBIs.
Senior Cole Phillips was the only batter to reach base for the Lightning.
River Hill 9, North East 1
Hawks ace Dylan Robson earned the complete game victory at Northeast (Anne Arundel) without yielding an earned run.
Chapelgate at St. Johns (at McCurdy Field, MIAA C Conference semifinal)
Wednesday, May 8 results
Chapelgate 7, Beth Tfiloh 1 (MIAA C Conference playoffs)