Two teams that came into the Class 4A North Region championship game with a combined record of 41-2 couldn’t determine a winner until extra innings.
But the dust finally settled in the bottom of the eighth inning when Sherwood’s leadoff hitter Luke Cheng led off with a double, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on a sacrifice fly by Joey Bowers to give the host Warriors (21-1) a 1-0 win over Dulaney (21-2).
Dulaney starting pitcher Wilson Farlow tossed 4 2/3 scoreless innings, allowed only one hit and he had fanned Cheng in his first two at bats.
“You’ve just got to flush it (first two at bats), rinse and repeat, just got to go out there, that’s what you live for and that’s what you get, four chances,” said Cheng, who had two hits of reliever Cole McGee. “Honestly, I was just trying to drive it, I hit his fastball earlier in the game, so I was sitting fastball I saw the curve and I was able to get good wood on it.”
Sherwood coach Sean Davis was confident in his junior sparkplug.
“He’s had a great year and he’s one of our best hitters and he is a resilient kid and when you talk about mental toughness, you can’t strike out twice and go in the tank, because you are going to come up in a big situation and he is mentally tough kid and he came up an he got the job done for us,” Davis said.
The coach was also optimistic when Joey Bowers was up with no outs and the winning run on third.
“He’s the two-hitter, he handles the bat well, he runs well and he gives us a lot of options,” Davis said.
The run made a winner out of relief pitcher Trevor McCormick.
McCormick threw one pitch and retired Dulaney’s dangerous number two hitter Bryce Frederick.
The Lions eliminated Howard, 6-2, this year in the regional semis and were trying to make the state tournament for the first time since 2001.
Mozoki was the winning pitcher and he also went 3-for-4 with a home run at the plate against Howard.
Mozoki was the winning pitcher and he also went 3-for-4 with a home run at the plate.
Against Sherwood, Mozoki was up with a runner on second in the top of the third and, after he slashed a hard line drive just foul down the left field line, he never got to hit because the runner was picked off by Vok.
He was in the on-deck circle when the top of the eighth ended and watched from first base when Cheng scored the winning run.