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Conococheague ousts South Mountain

July 11, 2007|By JOSH BOND / Staff Correspondent

BOONSBORO - Brandon Greene collected three hits and drove in the winning run to lead Conococheague to a 9-8 win over South Mountain Tuesday in a losers' bracket game in the Maryland District 1 11-12 All-Star Tournament at Murphy Field.

Conococheague grabbed an early 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning when Brandon Greene scored on a wild pitch and Brandon Toloso scored on an Aaron Taylor sacrifice fly.

Taylor struck out five for Conococheague and held South Mountain scoreless until the fifth inning. South Mountain tied the game at 2-2 on Caleb Grove's RBI double and an Ean Stine RBI single.

"Taylor's one of the best pitchers on the team and he was the reason we were still in it at the end," said Conococheague manager Robbie Eyler.

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The game heated up after Taylor left the game.

Conococheague struck as Tyler Byers reached on a double, took third base and scored on two wild pitches to take a 3-2 lead.

South Mountain regained the lead in the sixth by loading the bases en route to three runs off a combination of Conococheague wild pitches and errors.

"We had a lot of errors tonight," said Eyler. "We normally don't make a lot of errors, and we take pride in our defense, but not tonight."

Conococoheague atoned for its mistakes in the sixth on Jack Kelley's solo home run to left field. Greene followed with a sacrifice fly to drive in Sterling Christy to send the game into extra innings with a 5-5 tie.

South Mountain regained the lead, loading the bases to start a three-run rally. Aaron Turner hit a sacrifice fly to score Zach Poffenberger, followed by a Caleb Grove RBI single and a run-scoring walk to David Wilbraham for an 8-5 lead.

"I've coached here for awhile," said South Mountain manager Scott Hardy. "And this is the best group of kids for fighting back I've had, they should be proud of what they did."

But it was Cononococheague that would save the best comeback for last.

Hunter Eyler hit a solo home run with one out to start Conococheague in the seventh.

"Hunter's home run really sparked us," said Eyler. "It really got the kids motivated to do what they did."

After Eyler's home run, Conococheague wouldn't look back. Aaron Taylor hit an RBI double, Jack Kelley hit a double and later scored on an error and Christy walked to set up Greene's game-winning single.

Gunnar Whipp came on in relief for South Mountain in the first and finished with five strikeouts in five innings of work.

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