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Storm untangles Webb, Cougars

May 07, 2001

Storm untangles Webb, Cougars



By DAN SPEARS

dans@herald-mail.com

Game 1


No. 2 Jefferson 12

Greenbrier East 11

Greenbrier E.2123120-11122

Jefferson0232311-12205

Honaker, Glover (5) and McDowell. Conway, A. Lee (4), Holmes (6) and D. Lee. WP-Holmes (1-0). LP-Glover. HR-GE: McDowell (1st), Brackman (5th), Bennett (6th); J: Walls 3 (3rd, 4th, 7th).

Game 2


No. 8 Mercersburg 8

No. 2 Jefferson 4

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Jefferson0040000-472

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Marron, Brackley (4) and Streicher. Webb, Brooks (6), Mumaw (6) and Noll. WP-Brackley (4-0). LP-Brooks (2-1).

Game 3


No. 8 Mercersburg 14

Greenbrier East 13

Greenbrier E.8012200-13133

Mercersburg3214202-14151

Blake, Hunt (4) and McDowell; Thomas, Cline (1), Brackley (6) and Laddbush. WP-Brackley (5-0); LP-Hunt; HR-GE: Dehaven (1st, two on), Blake (1st, one on); M: Cline (5th, one on), Brackley (7th, one on).



SHENANDOAH JUNCTION, W.Va. - The buzz was going through the stands at Sager Field Saturday afternoon. Could there be a controversial one-hitter for Jefferson's Brad Webb against Mercersburg Academy?

Blue Storm third baseman Morgan Flowers answered that question with his next swing. The next time he touched the bat, he left no doubt who would win the game, either.

Flowers' RBI double in the sixth inning started an eight-run rally by Mercersburg, which he capped with an RBI single in his second at-bat of the inning to finish off an 8-4 victory in the second game of the F&M Bank Round Robin Tournament.

"I wasn't paying attention to (a possible no-hitter)," Flowers said. "I just took it one at-bat at a time. Each time up there is different."

For five innings, it was a lot of the same thing for the Blue Storm (13-4) against Webb: Go into the batter's box, make an out. Webb faced just one over the minimum through five with three walks, but he picked off two of them.

Then came the sixth. Mike Streicher hit a knuckler off the end of the bat toward first base. Jefferson's Ryan Lipscomb charged the ball, which ticked off the end of his glove and bounced away as he tried for a shoestring catch.

The official scorer's announcement of single sent the crowd into murmuring, which was silenced moments later by Flowers' double that just evaded left fielder Rob Lipscomb. When Mike Marron hit Webb's next pitch to the same spot past a diving Lipscomb, it made it 4-2 and Webb was done.

"Brad pitched a hard game on Wednesday, but he had done well. Even through 70 pitches, he was throwing the ball good today," Jefferson coach John Lowery said. "It was just a couple of inches."

Those inches slowly turned into miles against reliever Chris Brooks. An infield single, an error on a chopper and a bouncing single by Alex Laddbush made it 5-4. Another bloop single and a two-base error set things up for Flowers, who nearly decapitated Brooks with a shot up the middle to end the scoring.

"We got a big lift from an unexpected source," Mercersburg coach Karl Reisner said. "He really came through for us to start it, and then the ball started to fall. That's baseball sometimes."

For one inning, that was Mercersburg baseball. And it was the downfall for Jefferson (26-5-1), which watched the door slam courtesy of Chase Brackley. The Mercersburg reliever allowed three hits in four innings of relief and struck out four with a variety of pitches from nearly every arm angle imaginable.

"That's his role for us - to finish," Reisner said. "You don't get a finisher very often at this level. But that's what he does, he keeps us in things and makes us competitive at the end."

The Storm has been competitive all season against West Virginia's panhandle powerhouses. With one game to go, the Blue Storm is 6-0 against Jefferson, Hedgesville, Martinsburg and Musselman.

"This is huge for us ... these are some big-time programs," Reisner said. "We want to prove we can play with the big guys."

HEIGHT="6" ALT="* "> Both Jefferson and Mercersburg beat Greenbrier East with walk-off homers in the bottom of the seventh.

Sam Walls hit a solo shot - his third of the game - with one out to beat the Spartans in Game 1 for the Cougars. Chase Brackley's two-run homer capped a rally from an 8-0 deficit after one-half inning for the Blue Storm.

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