Hubs show less than 100 percent to Century

March 21, 2011|By BOB PARASILITI |

HAGERSTOWN — North Hagerstown’s season-opening baseball game could be described in one word.


The Hubs got singed on Monday as they poured the gas that allowed Century to catch fire and hand North an 8-1 that marked the beginning of North’s Maryland Class 2A state championship defense.

Century shortstop Mike Austin provided the spark with two hits, including a two-run triple, while pitcher Dan Virbickis smothered North with a 150-pitch performance to knock the Hubs off the pedestal a little.

North helped with its demise.

“We were sloppy all night,” said Hubs coach Steve Myers. “They made the plays and we didn’t. We were sloppy to begin with and it all snowballed from there.”

Century erased a 1-0 deficit with a four-run third inning sustained by three infield hits off starter J.T. Root that nicked the Hubs to the point where they couldn’t stop the bleeding.

Logan Ryder led off with a double down the right-field line and took third on Kevin Maguire’s bunt single before Austin’s two-run double to the fence in right center. After Kyle Brandt hit a sacrifice fly, Patrick Darnley reached on an infield single to third and moved to third on an errant pickoff throw to set up Nick Schaffer’s RBI single to right.

“I was happy with the way Root threw, but he got hit with bad luck and the pitch count,” Myers said. “But the pitcher can’t do much when the defense doesn’t help behind him.”

Century chased Root in the fifth when Austin led off with a double and scored when Darnley reached on Aaron Stoner’s throwing error. Zack Green followed with a two-out home run down the left-field line for a 7-1 lead.

The Knights picked up an insurance run in the sixth on another infield single by Schaffer off North reliever Ben Bushong.

North took a 1-0 lead off Virbickis when Alex Courtney drew a leadoff walk, moved to third on Hunter Williams’ one-out single to left and scored on Matt Daley’s RBI single to center.

The Hubs blew a golden opportunity to tighten the game in the fifth when they loaded the bases with one out but failed to score.

“We looked unprepared tonight,” Myers said. “We have practiced hard, but we looked sloppy from the start.”

Virbickis shut the Hubs down on six hits while working around seven walks with the help of eight strikeouts. He had only one inning where he retired the side in order.

Daley led North with two hits and an RBI, while Andrew Yacyk had two singles and two walks.

“This loss isn’t going to kill us,” Myers said. “It is a long season and we still have 19 games to go. We talked about what went wrong and we will be ready to roll. We just have to take one game at a time.”

Century 8, North Hagerstown 1
Century    004    031    0    —    8    10    0
North    010    000    0    —    1    6    3
Virbickis and Green. Root, Beshong (5) and Williams. WP — Vibickis (1-0). LP — Root (0-1). HR — C: Green (5th, one on).

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