It was power against power yesterday.
The power pitching of North Carroll's lefty Mike Huller against the power hitting of Jeremy Hancock and his South Carroll teammates.
Huller won the tense battle in front of major league scouts from the Orioles and the Kansas City Royals who have been on Huller's trail since last fall when he compiled a 10-0 record for the Oriolelanders.
Huller, a senior, pitched host North Carroll to a 5-2 victory.
Huller allowed four hits, struck out 10 and walked five (one intentionally) in six innings before leaving when his arm tightened up.
Huller virtually shut down Hancock who entered the game batting .593, with seven doubles, two triples, one home run, 11 RBIs and an on-base percentage of .621.
Hancock was 0-for-2 but he did drive in the second South Carroll run with a ground out to first in the fifth inning.
Also, Hancock was issued an intentional walk to load the bases with one out in the third inning.
The strategy worked for North Carroll coach Denny Snyder when Huller got out of the inning. Zach Hollman grounded into a force out and Jason Petroski struck out.
Huller also got out of a bases-loaded two-out jam in the second inning when he enticed Matt Jones to ground out to first base.
Kile Maxcy and Bryan Herche were the only South Carroll hitters to solve Huller (3-1). Maxcy was 2-for-3 with an opposite-field triple and one RBI, and Herche was 2-for-3.
"Everything was working well for me when I warmed up before the game," said Huller.
"And it all stayed with me in the game until my arm tightened up. My defense did a good job behind me and I was able to stay focused."
Huller said last week he had been bothered earlier in the season by the presence of the major league scouts at his high school games.
"I'm used to it now," he said. "They [scouts] don't bother me."
Orioles area scout Jim Gilbert had the radar gun on Huller yesterday and clocked him a few times in the low 80s.
"Mike's not all the way up [to top form] yet," said Gilbert who was Huller's coach on the Oriolelanders last fall.
North Carroll (4-3, 2-2 in the Central Maryland Conference, 1-1 in Carroll County) scored all five of its runs in the second inning.
The key hits were a bases-loaded single by Brian Yoakum that drove in two runs, a squeeze bunt by Jason Tawney that scored Mike Hartlove from third, and a run-producing single to center by Jason Hann.
In addition to his squeeze bunt, Tawney came in to relieve Huller in the seventh and retired three straight South Carroll (5-4, 2-2, 1-1) hitters.
Snyder said: "They had trouble hitting Jason's slower stuff after facing Huller's heat. Mike showed his maturity by getting out of those bases-loaded situation and we made some smart defensive plays."