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Offense leads Goretti's title defense

May 23, 1999|By JACK HILL III

St. Maria Goretti's David Kolsun understated it very nicely after the Gaels pounded out 20 hits in an 18-5 victory Sunday over West Nottingham Academy for the Maryland Private Schools B Division State Championship.

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"Some of these boys can hit," Kolsun said.

He should know. He went 5-for-5 with four RBIs and was named the tournament's most valuable player as Goretti defended its title.

But Kolsun didn't do it alone.

"We have freshmen that can hit the ball just as good as the seniors,'' the Gaels left fielder said. "Everybody, one through nine, can hit the ball. We just came out and we knew what we had to do. Everybody was fired up, and everybody got the job done today."

The win was especially meaningful for Kolsun.

"We really battled during the whole tournament," he said. "This was the last year for Anthony Sowers, Brad Runkles and myself. We just wanted to win one more state championship before we graduated."

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St. Maria Goretti got several clutch hits from some of its juniors. Joe Widmyer finished with four RBIs on three hits. Derrick Herman added three RBIs on two hits, while Kabby Everly had two hits.

Freshman Josh Carter had three hits and two RBIs. Runkles drove in a run, while Sowers had two hits.

"That has been the story for most of the season," Goretti coach Bill Fowkes said. "We have hit the ball, and we have scored lots of runs. It was a nice way to finish the season. It is a real thrill to win the championship. It has been a pleasure to coach this team. It has been their goal to repeat this year, and they have worked real hard to achieve that goal."

Goretti set a school record for most wins in a season, finishing 21-8.

Sophomore pitcher Ryan Devlin came on in relief with one out in the first inning and proceeded to strike out eight in three innings to get the win.

With one out in the fourth, Runkles moved over from first base to pitcher. Runkles gave up only one walk as he fanned seven in 3 2/3 scoreless innings of relief to clinch the title.

"We got some good relief pitching today from Ryan Devlin and Brad Runkles," Kolsun said. "Both relievers came in and threw smoke."

Fowkes has been impressed with Devlin's pitching this week.

"This was the second day in a row that Ryan Devlin pitched good in relief," Fowkes said.

The Gaels started off on the right foot with four runs in the top of the first on Runkles' RBI double, Widmyer's RBI triple, Herman's RBI double and Kolsun's RBI single.

After West Nottingham (12-6) scored three runs in the bottom of the first to narrow the gap to 4-3, the Gaels responded with two runs in the top of the second on a balk and Carter's RBI double.

The Gaels got a run in the third on a throwing error and then added two more runs in the top of the fourth on Herman's RBI triple by Herman and Kolsun's RBI infield single.

After the Rams scored two runs in the bottom of the fourth to reduce the deficit to 9-5, the Gaels got three more runs in the fifth on Widmyer's RBI single, a balk and a Herman sacrifice fly.

The Gaels raised their lead to 18-5 by scoring six runs in the sixth on Widmyer's two-run single, Carter's RBI single, a wild pitch and Kolsun's two-run double.

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