Gaels rout Saints in opener

March 24, 2009|By JACK HILL III/Staff Correspondent

St. Maria Goretti baseball coach Duane Myers had a successful debut Tuesday afternoon as the Gaels beat Saint James 13-3 in the season opener for both teams.

"It was a great win," Myers said. "We started the season off very well."

J.J. O'Neill starred both on the mound and at the plate for the Gaels. The senior, who has made a verbal commitment to play at UMBC next year, threw a four-hitter and struck out 10 to earn the win. He helped his own cause with two hits and three RBIs.

"I felt really good coming out in the first inning," said O'Neill. "I started to cool off a little bit, but I still felt a lot of pop on my fastball. My changeup was also working great. I am really satisfied with my first performance of the season."

"J.J. did an excellent job," Myers said. "The defense behind him did a great job. We have been working hard on our defense all spring and it paid off today."


Goretti (1-0) led 4-2 before erupting for eight runs in the bottom of the fourth. Jay Donoghue capped the outburst with a three-run homer to center.

After Saint James (0-1) got a run in the top of the fifth to reduce the deficit to 12-3, Goretti answered with a run in the bottom of the inning to end the game via the 10-run rule. Dan Rost walked, moved to second on a wild pitch and scored on a triple to center by O'Neill.

Will Murray added two hits and two RBIs for the Gaels.

"We know that we have some things we have to work on," Saint James coach Brian Smith said. "We have to continue to work hard and try to get better as the season goes along. We have to come out and give a good effort every day."

Note: Tuesday's game was originally scheduled as a doubleheader, but the coaches and umpires decided after the game there would not be sufficient time to complete a second contest.

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