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South Mountain gets shot at Maugansville

July 05, 2008|By JACK HILL III / Staff Correspondent

WILLIAMSPORT -- South Mountain built an early lead, then held off Conococheague's late comeback attempt to pull out an 11-9 win in the losers' bracket final on Thursday night in the Maryland District I Junior Tournament.

South Mountain (3-1) advances to the championship round at unbeaten Maugansville (2-0) on Saturday at 5:30. If Maugansville wins, it will clinch the title. If South Mountain wins, it will host the deciding game Sunday at 5:30 at South County Park in Chestnut Grove.

"It comes down to pitching and fundamental baseball," South Mountain manager David Wilbraham said. "We got our pitching and timely hitting. We drove in the runners that were in scoring position. We struggled a little at the end, but we pulled out the win."

Brandon Redman had three hits, three RBIs and three runs scored for South Mountain. Gunnar Whipp also had three hits and scored three runs, while Patrick Hollis added two hits and two RBIs for South Mountain.

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Brad Miller had three hits and two runs scored for Conococheague (2-2). Matt Hassler added two hits and two RBIs, while Aaron Taylor also drove in two for Conococheague.

South Mountain started with two runs in the bottom of the first inning. Whipp led off with a single to right, stole second and scored on Redman's RBI single. Redman went to second on a throwing error, stole third and scored on a sacrifice fly by Hollis.

South Mountain scored four more runs in the second to increase its advantage to 6-0. Joseph Minoglio walked and stole a pair of bases. One out later, Nathan Hardy was hit by a pitch and stole second. Whipp walked to load the bases. Minoglio scored on Redman's RBI single and Hardy and Whipp came around on the same play on an outfield error, while Redman moved to third. Redman scored on a wild pitch.

Conococheague got its first two runs in the top of the third on a two-run single by Matt Hassler.

But South Mountain answered back with four runs in the bottom of the third on a pair of errors and RBI doubles by Redman and Hollis to build a large 10-2 lead.

Conococheague got three runs in the fifth on an error and a two-run single by Aaron Taylor.

South Mountain got its final run in the sixth on an error for an 11-5 lead.

Conococheague scored four runs in the seventh on a RBI fielder's choice grounder by Joe Garrish and three bases-loaded walks to reduce the deficit to 11-9. But South Mountain reliever Ian Stine struck out the next Conococheague batter to end the game.

"We dug ourselves a hole, but we showed a lot of heart and came back," Conococheague manager Rick Aleshire said. "I am proud of the way that the boys played. We could have just laid down and died, but we made it a ballgame."

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