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West End rolls to District 1 11-12 title

July 16, 2006|by JACK HILL III / Staff Correspondent

West End Little League has had a few things to celebrate about over the years.

Last year, West End celebrated its 50th anniversary.

This year, it celebrated winning the championship of the Maryland District 1 11-12 Tournament.

West End's All-Stars finished their undefeated run through the tournament by beating Valley 15-7 on Saturday night in the championship game.

"I have been in the league for 22 years," West End manager Michael Houser said. "I have managed for 15 years. This is the first title for me. Every night, somebody different did something. You can't win with one or two boys. You have to win with the whole team. It wasn't the same stars every night. When a few players were off, a few other players came in and filled in the slack."

West End advances to the Maryland State Tournament, starting July 22 at Arbutus Middle School south of Catonsville.

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After a scoreless first inning, West End scored four runs in the top of the second to take the lead for good. With one out, Austin Scott singled to center. One out later, Greg Miller walked and Scott Boppe singled to right to drive in Scott. Michael Offutt then crushed a three-run homer to left.

West End added three more runs in the third to make it 7-0. With one out, Nathan Murray reached on an infield error and Brandon Hess slugged a two-run homer to left. Scott followed with a solo homer to center.

Valley (3-2) refused to quit. A three-run homer by Corey Scharenbroch in the bottom of the third cut the lead to 7-3.

But West End's offense was just too much, scoring seven more runs in the fourth to make it 14-3. An RBI infield single by Nathan Murray was a small blow; Hess' grand slam and Scott's solo shot were the big ones, as each drove a pitch deep for the second time in the game.

Valley avoided a 10-run-rule loss with four runs in the bottom of the fourth to make it 14-7, with Scharenbroch blasting his second three-run homer.

West End got its final run in the fifth on a solo homer by Zach Rowland.

"Our boys played their hearts out for five games," Valley manager Greg Spickler said. "The boys have nothing to be ashamed of. They lost to a very good West End team. I just want to congratulate West End for a job well done. I wish them the best in the state tournament."

Aaron Stoner pitched the first three innings for West End before moving to first base because of a sore arm.

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