Artale pitches Southern baseball past Hereford in Class 2A state semifinals
By By Tom Worgo and firstname.lastname@example.org
May 20, 2014 | 11:33 PM
Southern of Anne Arundel County ended Hereford's hopes for its first state championship game berth in 39 years by defeating the Bulls, 6-2, in the Class 2A state semifinal Tuesday night at Montgomery Blair High, in Silver Spring.
The Bulldogs (16-9) advance to play Parkside, of Wicomico County, Saturday at 4 p.m. at Ripken Stadium, in Aberdeen.
Southern junior right-hander Jon Artale picked up the win, pitching four scoreless innings in relief of starter Connor McCowan and giving up only two hits.
Hereford junior right-hander Robbie Mays took the loss, yielding four earned runs on nine hits in six innings.
Mays probably never expected to get that much work in the game. Hereford coach Todd Hartshorn lifted starting pitcher Jacob Covington after three batters because of a sore arm. He remained in the game at third base, however.
"Unbeknownst to us, it was tingling when he was throwing in the bullpen," said Hartshorn, whose team had six hits. "He went out there thinking it was just soreness, but it developed into something more."
Mays had to face a lineup Hartshorn said was "solid one though nine."
Senior first baseman Garrett Gibson went 3-for-3 with 2 RBI, junior shortstop Truman Thomas had three hits and an RBI and sophomore outfielder Dillion Waters had a two-run triple.
Southern went ahead 2-0 in the bottom of the first as Covington struggled with his control. He hit the leadoff batter Waters. After Thomas followed with a single to left field, Covington walked Gibson to load the bases.
Mays then replaced Covington and the first batter he faced, Steve Hogan, hit a sacrifice fly to left field to score Waters. Thomas tagged up to third on the play and scored on Connor McCowan's single to left field.
"Our seniors really stepped up and their leadership is what got us here," Hartshorn said. "We faced some adversity during the season and they picked each other up. We were 6-8, but we were in the top four in the state. We couldn't have asked for more than that."