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National blanks American

June 25, 2011|By JACK HILL III | Staff Correspondent

HAGERSTOWN — National used errorless defense, good pitching and timely hitting to beat American 10-0 on Saturday in a Maryland District 1 9-10 Tournament winners’ bracket game at Staley Park.

The game was stopped after five innings because of the 10-run rule.

National starting pitcher Corban Luna hurled 4 1/3 innings before he reached the pitch limit. Luna struck out nine and gave up no runs and only two hits to get the victory.

Cody Crawford came on in relief with one out in the bottom of the fifth for National and retired both batters that he faced to end the game.

Luna said National’s 6-0 lead after 1 1/2 innings made things go well for him.

“That big lead helped me because I knew that we were on top,” Luna said. “All I had to do was just concentrate on throwing strikes. My pitching was good. We played good. We hit the ball well. Everybody was working hard. I think that we are a pretty good team. I think that our team can go far in the tournament.”

Timmy Townsend had three RBIs and Brock Penn and Chase Robinson had two hits each for National.

“Corban Luna pitched a fantastic game as he got us into the fifth inning,” Penn said. “We played good defense behind him. Then, Cody Crawford came in and got the last two batters. We had some timely hits. We hit the ball really hard and we ran the bases smart. We were able to take advantage of the opportunities that we got when they came our way.”

National took a 2-0 lead in the top of the first. Crawford led off with a double to left, took third on a wild pitch and scored on a sacrifice fly to left by Townsend. After Penn singled to left, Luna reached base on a force out at second. Luna moved to second on a wild pitch and scored when Kyle Gilbert reached on a play that involved two errors.

National added four more runs in the second to boost its lead to 6-0.

Michael Hawbaker started the two-out rally for National with a walk and Crawford reached on a fielding error. Townsend then hit a two-run double to left and took third on the throw to home plate. Townsend eventually scored on a wild pitch. Penn singled to right and Luna and Gilbert both drew walks to load the bases. Penn came home when Stevie Witmer reached on an infield error.

National got one run in the fourth on an RBI infield single by Noah Lightner.

National scored its final three runs in the fifth. Townsend scored the first run on an infield error. The last two runs came home on RBI singles by Witmer and Robinson.

“At this point in the tournament, I feel real strong about our team,” Penn said. “But we can’t look too far ahead. We have to take it one game at a time.”

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