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Towson baseball coach admires spirit of his players without games

Towson's Noah Perkinson worked against Catonsville last season and the three-year varsity junior was expected to be the Generals top pitcher this season.
Towson's Noah Perkinson worked against Catonsville last season and the three-year varsity junior was expected to be the Generals top pitcher this season. (Doug Kapustin / For BSMG)

Towson baseball coach Shawn Tormey took his team to the regional finals last year when they lost to C. Milton Wright, despite perfect conditions for a championship game.

“We were hosting, it was the day of prom so we had an early start time, so the kids were all jacked up, the students came out of the building after school and it was a huge crowd and we were right where you start every season trying to get to, and sure enough we just didn’t play well that day,” Tormey said.

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Towson, coming off a 10-0 win over Milford Mill and 6-5 win over Franklin in the Class 3A North Region playoffs, committed six errors and lost 10-0.

That may have left a bad taste in the mouths of the seniors who played their final prep game that day, but for those who would be returning, the sudden end to the 2019 would be a reason to work harder and prepare for the 2020 season over the summer.

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That regular season has yet to come and may not because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Gov. Larry Hogan announced on March 12 that Maryland schools would be closed from March 16 through March 27 and he later extended that until April 24.

Towson did scrimmage Calvert Hall and Loch Raven before the season was halted.

“We were real happy with our starting nine, we were looking forward to defending our sectional title and getting back to the regional championship game,” said Tormey, whose squad finished 15-6.

Although this week was originally scheduled for Spring Break, Towson would have already played seven games, including one at rival Dulaney on March 23.

The Generals were also set to host the Lions on April 24, but that game won’t happen either.

Dulaney was coming off a 21-2 season and 1-0 loss in the regional championship game at Sherwood. The Lions returned three quality pitchers, including senior Cole McGee and juniors Will Farlow and Todd Mozoki.

“I think of Cole McGee and he’s a heckuva baseball player and to think that his career at Dulaney is over like that is so sad and we have six guys in that boat as well, so it’s really tough,” Tormey said.

Towson’s seniors are Josh Edwards (P/1B), Domenic Brooks (3B), Henry Pleszkoch (P/IF), Doyle McNew (C), Austin Turner (P/OF/IF) and Logan Devaney (OF).

Pleszkoch, Edwards and junior Noah Perkinson were the top three pitchers. Perkinson is in his third season on the varsity.

“Noah might be a Division I prospect,” Tormey said. “He’s got some colleges looking at him.”

Perkinson will be the designated hitter when he’s not on the hill and would be one of the top hitters along with talented sophomore shortstop Tariq Talley.

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“What’s good for the program is, it’s sad for those seniors, but our best players are underclassmen, so we will still get a chance to coach them,” Tormey said.

Among the underclassmen are juniors Harrison Rockhill (OF), Colin Parry (OF) and Brady Bayne (C/1B) and sophomores Nate Droski (P/IF), Ryan Boice (P/IF), Chase Supensky (P/1B), Justin Mealey (P/OF), Michael Stamatos (P/IF) and Sam Bayne (P/1B).

While he can’t physically coach his players, he has maintained contact with them.

“I probably text with them every other day, sometimes every day,” he said. “In terms of what I tell my players and my parents, let’s stay ready and every time they tell us the new re-opening date, I’m like, okay this is the new re-opening date, let’s be ready to roll on that first day back.”

Tormey works as a counselor at Dundalk High and knows as the days go on without schools being open, it’s tough maintaining his optimism.

“I work for the school system during the day in addition to coaching and everybody is prepared for spring season to be cancelled,” he said. “We are keeping in touch as much as possible.”

He takes pride in things like the door decorations the players are hanging up and displaying on social media.

“Somebody hung a home plate on their door and it said, ‘There is no place like home’ and it kind of caught on and the kids were hanging their jerseys and their hats," Tormey said.

With proms and other senior events being cancelled, Tormey is still holding out hope he can honor his senior athletes.

“Last year, we started an alumni baseball game and that was the first year we had one and it was tremendous, it was a great day,” Tormey said. “Towson has a rich baseball history and it was a wonderful day.”

This year’s alumni game is scheduled for May 2, which would be the first Saturday after schools are scheduled to resume on April 27.

“Right now, we can pretend that we are going to have that alumni game, let’s turn that into a day to celebrate our seniors,” he said. “I would hope that the worst case scenario is some time in July we have the alumni game and everyone could come out, but I guess really the worst case scenario is we all just go our separate ways from the 2020 season and that would just be sad.”

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