Severna Park coach Jim McCandless said it best after his No. 9 Falcons were humbled, 9-0, by Tyler Hibbs and visiting Arundel in baseball yesterday.
"Some of our kids got a taste of what it's like to face a top-flight high school pitcher," said McCandless, who had only two seniors in a lineup that included three sophomores and a freshman.
"We were kind of dominated by Arundel. Hibbs threw very well and was as good as advertised."
Hibbs, a junior right-hander who is The Sun's returning All-Metro Player of the Year, fired a two-hitter with seven strikeouts and two walks on 97 pitches to even his record at 2-2.
The No. 3 Wildcats gave Hibbs a lot of support with a 12-hit attack that featured three home runs. Jason Daniels (three RBIs), Brandon Gill (double) and Shawn Pleffner (2-for-3) all homered for the Wildcats (5-4), who bounced back from three losses this past week in Marietta, Ga.
Two of those losses were to nationally ranked teams, and Hibbs served as the stopper yesterday by improving his career record to 20-7, moving him into fifth place on Arundel's all-time list.
"I had good stuff today," said Hibbs, who gave up only singles to senior first baseman Mark Benischek in the fourth and seventh innings.
"My fastball, slider, curve and changeup were pretty much the same delivery [same arm slot]. So, they didn't know what was coming and I tried to keep them off balance.
"I pitched the first game Thursday in Georgia and lost to Lassiter [3-1], but we were ready today after Coach Walter's eight-hour practice Tuesday," Hibbs said, exaggerating.
The Wildcats built a 7-0 lead in the first three innings against senior starter Britton Quayle, who took the loss for the Falcons (5-4). A four-run third, highlighted by Daniels' two-run homer, was Quayle's undoing.
"I'm very pleased," coach Bernie Walter said of his defending Class 4A state champions' first game after the Georgia trip.
"We spent some time becoming a better ballclub learning some things in Georgia that will help us in the long run."