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Prep notebook: Trojans' Thomas joins 800-win club

April 18, 2013

Baseball

Chambersburg’s Bob Thomas has been around long enough to write a book about his 49 years of memories as coach of the Trojans.

Another chapter came when Thomas notched his 800th career victory Monday, 6-2 over Central Dauphin East.

Thomas is 800-253 for a .720 career winning percentage. The National Federation of High Schools record book lists 37 other coaches nationally with at least 800 victories.

Thomas will wait until the end of the current season before he makes a decision on returning for his 50th year.

“I just take the years one at a time,” Thomas said. “The staying power is that I enjoy what I am doing. It would be nice to make 50.”

His first team was in 1965, and since then, many, many players have moved on to college baseball. Thomas estimates he’s had 25 to 30 players go to the professional ranks.

“We would not have been successful if it weren’t for having players,” Thomas said.

But he’s also had good help on the bench, notably Dave Etter, who spent 37 years with Thomas before retiring.

Thomas has lasted through more than a couple of changes in the game, but he cited the biggest as the change in bats going to aluminum and now heading back to the CORE bats that have the wooden-bat feel.

* Of team statistics reported this week, Clear Spring senior Dylan Stouffer now leads the Tri-State area in runs batted in with 25.

Stouffer also is seeing more action in the field as coach Mark Shives has periodically shifted him to the outfield and used C.J. Elwood behind the plate.

Stouffer is an RBI machine, having driven in 47 runs last year for the Blazers.

Softball

Clear Spring will be the center of attention for Washington County on Monday.

The Blazers will have an opportunity to tie Catoctin atop the MVAL Antietam Conference standings on Monday and get a measure of revenge for a 7-5 loss to open the season on March 27.

It is the only loss for Clear Spring (9-1, 7-1) this season as the Blazers head into a non-conference game against Hancock today.

Catoctin (10-1, 8-0) is one run away from having a perfect season, losing 1-0 to North Carroll one day after beating Clear Spring.

The Catoctin bats have been on fire lately, scoring 80 runs in the last seven games while holding the opposition to 18 runs — 10 coming in one game, an 11-10 win over Smithsburg.

Clear Spring has done its fair share of scoring in its last five games, averaging 10.6 runs.

Track & Field

Chambersburg senior Zeb Yoder broke a 19-year-old school record in the boys pole vault Tuesday in a dual meet with Harrisburg at Trojan Stadium, while also becoming the first athlete this season to break an all-time Tri-State mark.

Yoder won with a jump of 15 feet, topping the previous area record of 14 feet, 8 inches, set in 1994 by Chambersburg’s Pete Johncour.

* Williamsport senior Nick Johnson had a sensational day at Smithsburg on Wednesday in the Wildcats’ tri-meet with the Leopards and Brunswick.

Johnson won the 200 (22.6), high jump (6-5) and long jump (21-10 1/2), turning in the top season performances in Washington County in all three events. His mark in the high jump also leads the Tri-State.

— Assistant sports editor Andrew Mason and staff writer Tim Koelble compiled this week's notebook.

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