Leather is 'in the zone' for Rebels

May 06, 2008|By CHRIS CARTER

South Hagerstown pitcher Tim Leather said he was "in the zone" Monday against North Hagerstown.

The Rebels senior had lots of company.

Leather scattered five hits and struck out 13, and No. 3 South racked up 11 hits in an 11-1 MVAL Piedmont victory on Senior Night.

Leather gave up four singles and a double and walked none. He loaded the bases with one out in the second but escaped unharmed after a pair of strikeouts.

"That was a big situation for me," said Leather (6-0), who has gone the distance in each of his wins. "After I got out of that situation, I knew I would be all right. It was lights out."


After giving up an unearned run in the third, Leather struck out the side in the fourth and fifth innings. He caught seven Hubs looking at called third strikes.

"(Leather) threw a hell of a ballgame and we were just afraid to swing the bats," said North coach Shawn Reynolds. "We got the bases loaded once and didn't even put the ball in play."

The Piedmont champion Rebels had no such trouble as it swept the season series.

Steve Grossman went 3-for-3 and drove in four runs, while Leather, Adrian Adams and Todd Jacobson each finished with two hits. Grossman's RBI single in the bottom of the fourth enacted the mercy rule.

"(North pitchers) were throwing it where I could hit it," Grossman said. "I just waited for my pitches and watched them the whole way through."

North helped the cause by committing four errors. An errant pickoff throw in the first inning helped South score a pair of unearned runs and the Rebels batted around and scored five runs in the third after the Hubs made errors on two ground balls.

The Hubs (4-12, 3-5) have lost eight straight games.

"Some days you get the dog and sometimes the dog gets you," said South coach Ralph Stottlemyer. "They're in a real slump right now and it's hard to get out of that."

Leather and Adams singled and scored - John Moser ran for Leather - for the Rebels in the first inning. Jacobson led off the second with an infield hit and scored on a triple by Grossman, who came in to score on a groundout by David Stone for a 4-0 lead.

North's Jake Steich doubled and scored on a throwing error in the top of the third, but South answered in the bottom half behind a two-run double by Brandon Knight, a two-run single by Grossman and a run-scoring single by Stone for a 9-1 edge.

The Rebels (13-3, 7-1) capped the scoring after RBI hits by Jacobson and Grossman in the fourth.

"The top seed for the playoffs was on the line and that gave us a little extra motivation," Stottlemyer said. "Then there's the fact that it's the North-South game on Senior Night. That's motivation in itself."

A newly installed announcers booth and public address system allowed South's baseball players to celebrate Senior Night for the first time.

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