11-12 tourney: South Mountain survives, eliminates Sharpsburg

July 10, 2012|By WILL ROBINSON | Staff Correspondent

BOONSBORO — If South Mountain’s 11-12 All-Stars were a band, they would be Survivor.

South Mountain had the “Eye of the Tiger” in Tuesday’s losers’ bracket game, holding off a late rally to eliminate Sharpsburg 10-9 from the Maryland District 1 tournament.

South Mountain will host Valley today at 6 p.m. in the losers’ bracket semifinal.

“I talked to Sharpsburg manager Scott Bare before the game and I said this would be a one-run game,” said South Mountain manager John Saunders. “My hat’s off to Sharpsburg. We played them in interleague all season and they are a good team. They’re well coached.”

With Sharpsburg leading 5-4, South Mountain scored five runs in the top of the fourth inning to take a 9-5 lead. Logan Saunders and Cole Rinehart hit back-to-back RBI singles and Steven Smothers capped off the inning with a three-run homer to center, his second of the game. Smothers also hit a two-run shot in the top of the third.

“Steven Smothers was awesome today. Two homers, five RBIs and he kept us in the game with his pitching,” said John Saunders.

 South Mountain scored its 10th run in the fifth inning on an RBI groundout by Zach Crampton. Sharpsburg, however, came back with four runs in the bottom half of the frame.

Ryan Crook hit his second homer of the game — a two-run shot — that also plated Ben Burgan. Colton Bare later plated Max Crist and Dalton Shank with a two-run single.

Reliever Brock Smith preserved the victory for South Mountain with three strikeouts in the bottom of the sixth.

“These kids gutted it out. This is a good group of boys we have here and they played hard, and now we have to do it again,” said Saunders.

“We knew these teams matched well and it was a good game,” said Scott Bare. “These kids are battlers but sometimes it just doesn’t go your way. It certainly wasn’t from lack of trying.”

Crampton hit a two-run homer for South Mountain in the first inning. Kelten Brown hit a two-run shot for Sharpsburg in the second.

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