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Valley's bats bash West End in 11-12 clash

July 05, 2013|By CURT HORNBECKER | curt.hornbecker@herald-mail.com

HAGERSTOWN — The West End Little League 11-12 All-Stars might have preferred a more conventional rainstorm.

Instead, thunder arose from the bats of the Valley Little League All-Stars in the form of five home runs — three of them in an eight-run sixth inning — propelling them to a 12-3 victory Friday night in the losers’ bracket of the Maryland District 1 tournament.

With the win, Valley advanced to the losers’ bracket semifinals and will travel to Federal on Saturday evening at 6.

Clinging to a 4-3 lead, Valley put runners on first and second against West End starter Xavier Dominguez, who was then relieved by Caleb Shanholtz.

After walking Austin Martin to load the bases and striking out Alex Kehr, Sean Simpson launched a grand slam, giving Valley an 8-3 lead.

The thunder was far from finished. Konrad Mongan roped a two-out single before Chase Miller clouted a two-run shot for a 10-3 advantage. Cameron Snyder followed with a double and scored on Chris Martin’s second homer of the game.

“We’re finally hitting the ball and having fun,” said Valley manager Lowell Coats. “And it’s not always the same people. Sean Simpson was struggling until he hit the grand slam.”

For West End, the bats were much more subdued.

“We just didn’t hit the ball,” said West End manager Mark Barton. “We haven’t really hit since the first game.”

Some of that can be attributed to Chris Martin, who started Friday’s game for Valley, allowing three runs on four hits while striking out eight in four innings.

He was at least matched by Dominguez, who fanned 10 in five-plus innings but gave up solo home runs to Chris Martin and Kehr.

West End broke a scoreless tie in the bottom of the third. Jeremy Peralta doubled and moved to third on an error before scoring on a fielder’s choice.

After Chris Martin’s homer tied it in the fourth, a solo shot by Dominguez gave West End a 2-1 lead in the bottom half.

Kehr’s blast tied the score in the fifth. Zach Ebersole doubled and moved the third on a wild pitch. Bryce Arnold then drew a one-out walk and moved to second on another wild pitch which allowed Ebersole to score. Arnold later crossed the plate on a fielder’s choice to give Valley a 4-2 lead.

Chris Martin went 3-for-4, scored three runs and drove in three for Valley.

Dominguez had two hits and an RBI to pace West End.

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