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Sharpsburg outslugs West End in 11-12 semifinals

July 03, 2013|By CURT HORNBECKER | curt.hornbecker@herald-mail.com

SHARPSBURG — There was just no silence in the bats of the Sharpsburg Little League 11-12 All-Stars.

An 18-hit attack was enough to thwart the upset plans of West End as Sharpsburg recorded a 13-9 win Wednesday night in the winners’ bracket semifinals of the Maryland District 1 tournament.

Sharpsburg will host Conococheague in Friday’s winners’ bracket final at 6 p.m. West End will host Valley in a losers’ bracket game Friday evening at 6.

“They’re the team to beat,” said West End manager Mark Barton of Sharpsburg. “We gave it our best shot, but we’re still in it. We’ll be back. They were the better team tonight.”

The game could have gone either way as late as the fourth inning, as West End scored two runs in the top half of the frame to tie the score at 8.

But Sharpsburg’s bats simply refused to go quietly.

Peyton Mason laced a one-out double in the bottom half and scored on John Grimm’s single. T.J. Reeder followed with another single before Josh DeRocher belted a three-run homer — the decisive blow.

“Batting number nine (in the lineup), we look to (DeRocher) to get us to the top of the order,” said Sharpsburg manager Rodney Burgan. “But he’s been working really hard at the plate, and he really came through for us tonight.”

DeRocher finished 3-for-3, drove in four runs and finished the game on the mound.

Sharpsburg starter Ben Burgan ran into trouble early, giving up four runs in the first on three hits. Xavier Dominguez, Joseph Ringus, Elijah Whittington and Cade Shifflett had an RBI each in the inning.

But that lead didn’t last long, as Sharpsburg put seven runs on the board in the bottom half against West End starter Will Grove, highlighted by a two-run homer by T.J. Kalagher and RBI doubles by Mason and Aaron Hartle.

“That was a huge morale booster for us,” said Burgan, “especially with our pitcher struggling a little bit.”

West End made it 7-6 in the top of the third, but Sharpsburg responded with a run in the bottom of the inning.

Dalton Shank had three hits and two RBIs for Sharpsburg.

Stevie Billman drove in two runs for West End.

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