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Halfway's power rips Maugansville

July 08, 2010|By DAN KAUFFMAN

MAUGANSVILLE -- Halfway manager Les Martin called his 11-12 All-Stars "the best All-Star team I've ever had."

It was hard to argue after Wednesday's showing against Maugansville.

Halfway ripped 15 hits -- including four home runs -- and scored nine runs in the final two innings to pull away for a 14-6 victory in the Maryland District 1 11-12 Little League Tournament winners' bracket quarterfinals.

"I definitely have a lot of hitting, that makes it easier," Martin said. "I have kids on the bench who can hit, the hard thing is deciding who to start."

Halfway will host Valley in the winners' bracket semifinals Friday night at 6. Maugansville will travel to Sharpsburg tonight for a losers' bracket game at 6.

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"They hit it, we didn't and that was the story of the day," Maugansville manager Brad O'Connor said. "Our bats came alive a little bit at the end, but not enough to get it done. We live to see another day tomorrow. I hope our kids are ready to go."

Halfway took a 3-0 lead in the top of the second on Austin Sigler's two-run double and Zach Andrews' sacrifice fly.

Maugansville cut the lead to 3-2 in the bottom half without getting a hit, using two walks, three stolen bases -- including a heads-up steal of home by Jordan Davis -- and an error.

Halfway made it 5-2 in the third on Malphurs' two-run blast to left center onto the roof of a Maugansville Ruritan storage building.

Halfway gambled a little bit by relieving starter Bryce Ruppenthal after 2 1/3 innings and 49 pitches, meaning he'll only have to rest for two days. Ruppenthal did not allow a hit, although he did walk four and watched three other hitters reach on errors.

"It's hot out and we don't want to hurt anybody's arm," Martin said. "I didn't want to throw him 85, and I have a lot of good arms so I can roll the dice."

Relievers Brandon Gooden (2 2/3 innings, 46 pitches) and Tanner Canfield (one inning, nine pitches) held Maugansville to four more runs.

Maugansville cut the lead to 5-4 in the fourth on Ethan Spicher's two-run single, but Halfway started unloading in the fifth. Canfield hit a solo homer and Sigler and Billy Miller added RBI singles in a four-run fifth. Ryan Downes launched a three-run homer and Mikey Toms -- the last hitter off the bench -- added a two-run blast in the sixth.

Matthew Shipley homered in the bottom of the sixth for Maugansville. Logan Kauffman added an RBI double.

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