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Hancock rallies to topple South Mountain

July 06, 2010|By WILL ROBINSON/Staff Correspondent

HANCOCK -- Do you believe in miracles?

South Mountain had a comfortable 15-5 lead heading into the fifth inning with a win seeming like a foregone conclusion in its Maryland District 1 Junior Tournament game against Hancock on Monday.

However, Hancock scored four runs in the bottom of the fifth to keep the game alive, then posted a nine-run sixth to earn an 18-15 win and a date with Maugansville on Wedensday at 5:30 pm.

"All I can say is that I'm proud of the way they battled back and found a way to win this game," said Hancock manager Dave Kerns.

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South Mountain broke a 2-2 tie with an eight-run explosion in the second inning, thanks in large part to three Hancock errors and RBI doubles by Reed Cantler and Casey Strunk.

South Mountain scored three more in the third on a two-run single by James Merson and another RBI single by Conner McLellan to increase its lead to 13-4.

"Like I've said before, we give them a lot of runs, and tonight we did a lot of that," said Kerns.

Hancock came into the game looking listless. South Mountain starter Travis Stone held Hancock's bats mostly in check, giving up only three earned runs in 3 1/3 innings.

But reliever Trevor Walsh gave up five runs in one inning, including an RBI single to Brayden Litton and a two-run single to Ryan Smith, which cut the deficit to 15-9.

"Travis was fantastic, though we may have fooled ourselves putting him back into the game," said South Mountain coach Joe Schofield.

After two straight Tyler Hollis walks to start the bottom of the sixth inning, Stone retook the mound, but by that time fatigue had set in.

Hancock manufactured nine runs on seven hits, including a two-run single by Brayden Litton and a two-run double by Conner Litton, who led Hancock with six RBIs.

"It's good, it's definitely good," Conner Litton said of the win, "It keeps us going on to the championship."

Conner Litton also shined in relief, allowing two hits in two innings to shut the door on South Mountain's season.

"My team has what it takes to play with anybody, but they coasted. It's a seven-inning game," said Schofield. "We couldn't finish the deal."

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