Dulaney senior pitcher Matt Dow went 4-for-4 and pitched a shutout to lead the visiting Lions to an 11-0 victory over Catonsville.
How many hits he allowed is under debate.
According to the official Catonsville scorebook, he allowed one hit — an infield single by Bennett Eiswert leading off the bottom of the fourth inning. Dulaney’s scorebook ruled the play an error.
Eiswert reached first when he grounded to deep short, where the ball fielded cleanly. He was ruled safe by the first-base umpire, who said after the game that the ball came loose after Eiswert already beat the throw.
Catonsville coach Eric Warm agreed with the umpire.
“I have the home book, so I’m definitely ruling it a hit, so the home book is correct,” he said. “If he fields it cleanly and would he have beat it, then the answer is ‘Yes.’
One infield hit didn’t make the Comets coach any happier a day after pouring on the offense in a 9-8 victory over Perry Hall.
“We had a couple good line drives right at them, Tommy [Bolster] hit a nice hard ball there at the end, but just not enough going with our bats today, plenty of base runners,” Warm said, noting Bolster’s home run ignited a rally against Perry Hall.
After Dulaney scored four runs in the top of the first inning, Dow struggled with his control in the bottom of the first when he allowed a pair of one-out walks, but he got out of the inning with a flyout and groundout.
In the second, Dow stroked a one-out double, fueling a two-run inning that included a run-scoring double by Liam Gaumont and sacrifice fly from Matt Carr for a 6-0 lead.
Dow got in hot water again in the bottom of the second when he walked Eiswert and Cameron Turner, but he rebounded to strike out the side and escape the jam.
“I was struggling a little bit on the mound. I was landing on a bit of an upslope there, so by the second inning I had to make an adjustment where I moved over on the mound and I needed to do something where I was going to fully complete my motion and work toward the plate,” Dow said. “Once I made that adjustment I was able to dial in and do what I needed to do.”
He finished with nine strikeouts and six walks, with only two free passes coming after the first two innings.
In addition to the sharp one-hopper by Bolster to shortstop Thomas Mezzulo in the fifth, the hardest hit balls were a line out to right fielder Nate Farlow by Adam Stephen and a liner to second baseman Maddox Helme by Roy Brown in the third.
“They [defense] did a great job,” Dow said. “It’s a great feeling on the mound knowing that my teammates have my back and that I can miss with a pitch sometimes and they are going to back me up.”
His team also fed off his work at the plate as Helme and Gaumon added two hits each and Mezzulo had an RBI double. Mezzulo hit for the cycle in a 13-1 victory Tuesday over Eastern Tech when Dow’s younger brother, Connor, tossed a one-hitter.
It was the Lions’ fourth straight win after falling to Perry Hall, 5-0, in the season opener. Since then, Dulaney has outscored opponents, 43-7.
“We’ve been preaching, just attack fastballs early, attack often, just find a pitch you like because most of the time you are getting a fastball. So we are trying to really emphasize attacking fastballs, doing what we can with it and just playing solid, solid defense,” first-year coach Max Jemellaro said. “We got off to a bumpy start against Perry Hall and then we figured it out.”
Warm’s Comets fell to 2-3, but the coach is getting his young pitching staff plenty of experience.
“I’ve had a freshman start every game this year,” said Warm, who started Braden Bates against Dulaney. “The freshmen are good ballplayers and I’m having them face the top of team’s lineups. It’s helping my other pitchers settle in and get grooving through the lineups, there is some strategy behind it in getting these kids that are good baseball players getting caught up to speed at the varsity level.”