North's Hose fires heat at South

May 04, 2004|by TIM KOELBLE

The night pretty much belonged to North Hagerstown senior T.J. Hose as he toed the rubber to do battle with rival South Hagerstown in the first Diamond Classic at Municipal Stadium on Monday night.

Hose, who will march on to East Carolina University next fall, was the dominating figure in North's 8-2 victory over South, avenging a 13-1 loss to the Rebels on April 16, a game in which Hose was roughed up.

The right-hander went the distance for his fifth win in seven decisions with 14 strikeouts, allowing only four hits, three walks and one earned run. He also blasted a two-run homer in a decisive six-run third inning and had the fortune of striking out four Rebels in the sixth inning.


"I was thinking about that first game we lost," Hose said. "I wanted to get ahead on the count tonight and I got a lot of 0-2 situations."

Hose, who looked unhittable with a near 90-mph fastball and sharp-moving slider, allowed only singles to David Miner and David Lynn through the first five innings. South (9-6, 8-3 MVAL Antietam) scored in the sixth on Miner's second hit, a stolen base, a wild pitch on a third strike and a throwing error.

"(T.J.) was close to being at his best," Hubs coach Shawn Reynolds said. "He pitched very well against (Nick) Adenhart and Williamsport. His slider was his command pitch."

North (11-5, 9-2 MVAL), after leaving the bases full in the opening inning against Miner, managed a solo run in the second when Kyle Robinson reached on an error and eventually came around on a sacrifice fly by Brent Toms. However, the Hubs again left the bases full in the second.

Miner, who walked four in the first two frames, served up a one-out double to Chris Grove before walking three straight Hubs.

With one run in, Orland Dean smashed a pitch to the wall in right-center to empty the bases. After a strikeout, Hose sent a Miner fastball on the outside corner into the bullpen in right-center for his second homer of the year.

"We had some bad swings early, but Dean had that gap hit and that opened things up," Reynolds said. "We were prepared better for South this time and we've been playing better as a team. This win (six straight) gives us a big boost and hopefully we can carry it into the tournaments."

North had the benefit of three walks and a hit batsman to score its last run in the sixth inning. South tallied a solo run in the top of the seventh on a walk, single by Patrick Hutzler and a Hubs fielding error.

"Walks and errors took us apart," South coach Ralph Stottlemyer said. "North had six very solid hits. They were a different team than the first time we played."

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