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Prep Baseball: Blazers hold off Rebels

April 05, 2013|By TIM KOELBLE | koelble@herald-mail.com
  • South Hagerstown's Colby Johnson, left, and Clear Spring's Dylan Stouffer exchange smiles while Stouffer rounds the bases on a first-inning home run Friday.
By Ric Dugan/Staff Photographer

CLEAR SPRING — The Clear Spring baseball team did just enough offensive damage in the first inning and survived several South Hagerstown threats to post a 3-2 MVAL Antietam Conference win on Friday.

The Blazers fell behind 1-0 in the top of the first inning and then scored three runs in their opening at-bats before the game became a battle of starting pitchers making adjustments.

“We’re fortunate to win this game,” said Clear Spring acting head coach Justin Michael. “South is an improved team.”

Lefty Jared Brant made his first start of the year for Clear Spring (3-1, 3-1) and fell behind 1-0 because of his inability to find the plate.

After a one-out infield single by Airin Martin, Brant walked the next three batters, the third to Kenny Mack scored Martin.

Brant struck out the next two batters, finding his rhythm that took him through four innings.

Clear Spring quickly answered in its half of the first on a one-out single by Dylan Appel that was followed by Logan Appel’s two-run home run, his second of the year.

Dylan Stouffer followed with his first homer of the season, a solo shot and quickly the Blazers were up 3-1 against starting pitcher Zach Sines.

“There were some mechanical issues with (Brant),” Michael said. “Once he figured it out, he was tough.”

He went four innings, allowing only Martin’s hit, and only one ball was hit to the outfield. He struck out eight and walked three.

Sines escaped further trouble in the second inning without allowing a run when Clear Spring mounted a two-out threat on a triple by Riley Lazich and two walks, before Sines struck out Stouffer.

He went the rest of the way, yielding only one more hit, and struck out seven for the game, tossing 111 pitches.

“I know he threw a lot of pitches, and we kept looking for reasons to take him out, but (Sines) hung in there and showed a lot of heart,” South coach Zack Swisher said.

Stouffer came on in relief for two innings and kept South off the scoreboard as the Rebels (1-2, 3-3) stranded three runners.

The seventh became interesting as David Moser came on to pitch for the Blazers.

After a pair of groundouts, Tim Kitchen reached on an error and Martin walked. A wild pitch left first open and Colby Johnson walked before Kitchen scored on a wild pitch.

With the potential go-ahead run at second, Moser managed to strike out Alex Miller to record the save.

“Stouffer went through the lineup and we brought in Moser, but he didn’t have his best stuff,” Michael said.

All told, South left eight runners stranded, leaving Swisher shaking his head.

“We had them in a huge jam and we left (Brant) off the hook,” Swisher said.” We just did not capitalize on our opportunities.”

Clear Spring 3, South Hagerstown 2
South    100    000    1    —    2    3    2
Clear Spring    300    000    x    —    3    6    1
Sines and Bickford. Jar. Brant, Stouffer (5), Moser (7) and Elwood, Stouffer (7). WP—Brant (1-0). LP—Sines (1-1). SV—Moser (1). HR—CS: L. Appel (1st,one on), Stouffer (1st, none on).

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