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Hagerstown stars stay alive, 8-4

August 17, 2000

Hagerstown stars stay alive, 8-4



By BOB PARASILITI / Staff Writer


WASHINGTON, Pa. - The Hagerstown PONY League All-Stars gave West Covina (Calif.) a taste of its own medicine.

coninued

Make that a double dose. Now Hagerstown has to hope it ends up being an overdose.

Hagerstown put an overbearing amount of pressure on the defending champions and used a gutsy pitching performance by Nick Adenhart to cultivate one hit into a 8-4 victory Thursday to stave off elimination from the PONY League World Series at Lew Hays Field.

Manager Rick Suder stole a page out of West Covina's playbook, using gamesmanship and intimidation to force the first ultimate division final game in the World Series since 1981 today at 7 p.m. No team with one loss has made it to the tournament's final since West Covina did it 19 years ago.

"We're still kicking," Suder said. "We decided today that we weren't going to be intimidated by them or the umpire. If they were going to play games with us, we were going to play them back."

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West Covina committed seven errors, including five in Hagerstown's five-run second when it took total control of the game. Hagerstown had one hit - a harmless second-inning single by Drew Crawford that just advanced runners to prolong the rally.

The bulk of Hagerstown's attack came by putting the ball in play as West Covina's defense cracked like a walnut.

Adenhart pitched the complete game, throwing 130 pitches, including 83 strikes.

"I expected to go the whole game," said Adenhart, who has pitched in three of the four Hagerstown games, throwing 282 pitches in 16 innings. "I feel good the more I throw. (Suder) came out and told me to keep my composure and not to lose my head. I wanted to win this one because they shouldn't have beaten us the first time."

Adenhart allowed the four runs (one earned) on six hits with three walks and 13 strikeouts.

West Covina took a 1-0 lead in the first on a conventional single and stolen base by starting pitcher Eric Eichhorst and RBI hit by Chris Lopez, prompting Suder's visit to the mound.

Hagerstown got three back in the bottom of the inning without benefit of a hit. David Miner's walk followed by a passed ball and a wild pitch plated all three runs.

West Covina took a 4-3 lead in the second, but Hagerstown rallied.

Phil Saloom led off with a walk to chase Eichhorst for Chris Acevedo. He moved to third on a wild pitch and a passed ball on a strikeout that allowed Luther Davis to reach base. Davis left on a delayed steal, forcing a rundown to bring home the tying run. But when Acevedo threw to second, second baseman David Rico dropped the ball and Davis was safe.

After Crawford's one-out hit, Jordan drove in a run on Joseph Roseli's error. Lopez committed a double error at first on Tim Kellinger's two-out grounder to bring home two more runs. Kellinger stole second and third and scored when catcher James Skelton airmailed a throw into left field.

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