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Carey helps Federal carry on in tourney

July 08, 2010|By TIM KOELBLE

Malik Carey hit 10 home runs while playing for Kiwanis during Federal Little League's regular season, but on Wednesday night, it was his speed of foot that became so important.

Carey stole home on one occasion and also scored by leapfrogging a tag attempt at home plate to help boost Federal past Hancock 11-4 in a Maryland District 1 11-12 Little League Tournament battle.

"With the team we have I don't need to hit home runs," said Carey, batting in the cleanup spot for the second straight game.

Federal advances to play at Conococheague on Friday in a winners' bracket semifinal.

Carey had two singles, was hit by a pitch, drove in two runs and scored three runs -- the first in the third inning that gave Federal a 4-3 lead and one in which it never relinquished.

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Ryan Brown singled with one out and Carey was hit by a pitch in the bottom of the third. Brown scored on a single by Daimen Nave with the fleet-footed Carey taking third.

Before the Hancock catcher could get into position after returning the ball to pitcher Trent Rider, Carey suddenly broke for home and scored easily.

"I noticed the pitcher wasn't paying attention when he got the ball and I just went," said Carey.

One inning later with Federal ahead 7-3, Carey came around from second on a two-run single by Clay Smith. The throw clearly beat Carey to the plate, but he hurdled the tag for a run and an 8-3 lead.

"I went with the hurdle. ... It was just reflex," said Carey.

Federal added three runs in the fifth inning on one hit -- Carey's infield single.

"(Carey) drove us nuts tonight," said Hancock manager Brian Rider. "A lot of kids would just slide, but he's an athlete and made that leap."

Hancock took a 1-0 lead against Federal pitcher Justin Smith in the second but a two-run home run by Brady Munson off Hancock's Trent Rider jumpstarted Federal.

But Darren Lashley came right back with a two-run shot in the third to put Hancock back on top 3-2.

"It was important for us to answer Hancock right away with such a good pitcher going for them," said Barry Brown. "(Munson) showed some guts with two strikes putting the ball in play."

Smith went six innings against a potentially heavy hitting Hancock team, but allowed only five hits, striking out nine.

"(Justin) did not give in at all and he deserves a ton of credit," said Barry Brown.

While Federal played for the second straight night, it was the opener for Hancock.

"We had an off night and I know we're a much better team that we showed tonight," said Brian Rider. "I didn't like having the bye. ... The kids want to get out. We only had five hits and gave (Federal) some extra outs. But we'll be back."

Lashley had two of Hancock's five hits.

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