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Funkstown lives up to first half of name as drought continues

June 18, 2006|by CHRIS CARTER / Staff Correspondent

FUNKSTOWN - The drought continues.

Funkstown Legion Post 211 dropped two more games Saturday to extend its losing streak to eight.

Funkstown was swept by Mount Airy Post 191 for the second straight weekend and is winless in seven Western Maryland District games this season. On Saturday, Post 211 dropped the opening game 12-2 and fell short in a 5-2 decision in eight innings in the nightcap.

Funkstown (3-9, 0-7) has not won since splitting a doubleheader during Memorial Day weekend.

"It's been a combination of things," said Funkstown coach Brian Smith of the slump. "Sometimes there are days when we hit and don't pitch well or we pitch well and don't hit. Then there are times when we play well and it's one inning or one ball that kills us."

In the opening game, it was the third inning that doomed Post 211.

Mount Airy (9-7, 5-1) sent 12 batters to the plate and scored eight runs, using four extra-base hits. The rally was capped with Dan Gerjets' bases-loaded drive that took a bad bounce over Funkstown center fielder Matt Ridenour's head and rolled to the fence for a three-run triple. Post 191 scored five runs with two outs in the inning to take an 8-0 lead.

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Mount Airy invoked the 10-run mercy rule with four runs in the fifth inning, including two more with two outs.

"(When there are two outs, that's) when you need the big hit," said Mount Airy coach George Richardson.

Funkstown managed just three hits off Post 191 starter Steven Smith, who went the distance and struck out five with no walks. He surrendered an infield single and a double to Kevin Brashears and a two-run home run to Justin Weaver in the third.

Mount Airy got an equally impressive start from Weston Szymanski in the second game. Szymanski scattered five hits over seven innings but had his shutout bid spoiled by Funkstown's last-ditch rally in the seventh.

Szymanski held Funkstown to three hits through the first six innings, but Post 211 finally showed signs of life while trailing 2-0 in the seventh. Cody Poffenberger singled to lead off the inning and Jere Mills was hit by the pitch to put runners on first and second. After a sacrifice bunt moved the runners to second and third, Trevor Cobb hit a ground ball to the right side just out of the reach of Mount Airy second baseman Matt Greene to tie the game at 2-2 and force extra innings.

Mount Airy regained the lead in the eighth on a run-scoring double by Steven Rice and an insurance two-run home run by Robbie Mathias to give Post 191 a 5-2 lead. Carl Huber pitched a hitless eighth for the save.

Funkstown's Jason Sutherland was the hard-luck loser. Sutherland gave up just two runs on four hits through seven innings before being nicked for the winning runs in the eighth.

"You gamble there," Smith said. "(Sutherland) threw a great ball game and only had 80 pitches through seven innings. We brought him back out with a tie game and he gets a bad hop to start the eighth and then a double to the gap and 'Funkstown' home run."

Gerjets finished the doubleheader with four hits, while Mathias totaled three hits and four RBI and Steven Rice added three hits and three RBI.

Brashears led Funkstown with three hits on the day while Cobb had two infield singles in the second game.

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