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Williamsport starts long week with tough loss

April 08, 2008|By DAN KAUFFMAN

BOONSBORO -- Maybe it's a good thing Williamsport's baseball team gets to play three more games in the next three days.

It will help the Wildcats put Monday's excruciating 1-0 loss to MVAL Antietam rival Boonsboro behind them.

"I think we played hard, we just need to sleep on it and let it go," Williamsport coach Larnie Vickers said after the Wildcats (2-2, 0-1) left 12 runners on base -- eight in scoring position -- and failed to execute in the field in the sixth inning. "That should help us, to go out and get to play again. I hope they don't bring the loss with them, but knowing them, they'll forget all about it."

Williamsport travels to No. 1 Jefferson tonight, hosts Catoctin on Wednesday and travels to Brunswick on Thursday to make up last Friday's rainout.

Boonsboro (3-2, 1-0) battled its way out of jam after jam before manufacturing the only run it needed in the sixth.

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Jake Pendergraft led off and was hit by Williamsport starter Brian Braswell. Josh Poffenberger followed with a slow grounder to second, but first baseman Patrick Hammond dropped the throw for an error. Eli Beard then tapped a sacrifice bunt back to the mound, and Braswell tried to force out Pendergraft at third but was late with the throw, leaving the bases loaded with no outs.

Vickers turned to Travis Sluger to relieve Braswell, who allowed just two hits and three walks in his first five innings. Sluger struck out John Shobe, but Dwayne Washco's fielder's choice grounder to second scored Pendergraft with the game's only run. Jordan Young -- pinch running for Beard -- was retired at second on the play.

Sluger struck out David Lewis to end the inning, but the one run proved to be enough. Boonsboro brought in closer Josh Smith, who allowed a walk and an single but got two strikeouts and a fielder's choice groundout to end the game.

"What can you say about Josh Smith," Warriors coach Ben Leonard said. "He's a closer and he knows his role. He dreams of this, coming in with a one-run lead and shutting them down."

Warriors starter Chris Selby allowed three hits and six walks in 4 1/3 innings, but when he needed an out, he got it. Williamsport left runners on second and third in the first inning, left the bases loaded in the third and left a runner at third in the fourth. Shobe came on in relief, got out of a bases-loaded jam to end the fifth and went on to get the win.

"We left too many baserunners on," Vickers said. "We couldn't get the solid hit we needed, and when we did, it went right at somebody."

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