The Havre de Grace Little League 11-12 (Major) All-Star baseball team opened District 5 play Wednesday, but it wasn’t the result the team was looking for.
Chesapeake City scored at least one run in every inning to defeat Havre de Grace, 12-3, at Perryville Little League’s Trego Field.
Havre de Grace will be in an elimination game Thursday night at 7 p.m., facing Rising Sun at Trego Field.
“Control has always been a problem, especially with kids at this age. They come up here, they want to throw as hard as they can, instead of trying to control the strike zone,” Havre de Grace manager Jason Bauer said. “We’ve been working on it for three weeks, still things to work on, but definitely that played a part in it.”
Havre de Grace pitchers, three of them, walked 13 batters. Nine of those scored runs.
Two hits and two walks by Chesapeake City put the winners ahead 4-0 after one inning. A leadoff walk to Jared Sturgill led to a run in the second inning, while Havre de Grace shortstop Slayton Samuels made a nice 6-unassisted to 3 double play to help quiet the inning.
Havre de Grace made all of its noise offensively in the third inning, scoring three times to get back in it. Josh Walls opened the inning with a single. Two batters later, Connor Laverick drilled a double to the fence in left field. Walls beat a realty throw home to score and Laverick moved to third on the throw.
The next Havre de Grace batter went down on strikes, but Samuels and Gavin Lee both drew walks. Laverick and Samuels both scored on passed balls before the final out was made.
Chesapeake City, though, took advantage of three walks to score three more runs over the next two innings for an 8-3 lead.
Chesapeake City then closed out the game with four runs in the fifth. Braeden Brown walked with the bases loaded to drive in one, Sturgill drove in another with a fielder’s choice and Drayden Ash drove in the final two with a single.
Havre de Grace made a handful of good plays in the inning to cut down runs at the plate. “I thought we played some pretty good defense there at the end, to stay in it and make it a six-inning game,” Bauer said.
Brendan Sharff had a single for Havre de Grace in the fourth, the team’s final hit.
Laverick made the pitching start, working 3.1 innings. He allowed two hits, eight walks and eight runs, while striking out two.
Walls threw two-thirds of an inning, walking four, allowing two hits and two runs. John Hampton also threw one inning. He allowed one hit, one walk and two runs. He struck out one.
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“The way this team really never gave up was what I was proud of,” Bauer said. “We’ll continue working, hopefully have a little better control tomorrow and get the bats going a little bit more and hopefully we will come out.”