June 28th, 2013

St. Martha nabs CSAA baseball title

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Conor Revell

Managing Editor

St. Martha nabs CSAA baseball title
St. Martha won the seventh-eighth-grade baseball championship with a 12-5 victory / photo by Conor Revell

St. Martha defeated St. Raphael/John Paul II Academy 12-5 Friday night in the CSAA baseball seventh-eighth-grade championship game at Holy Cross High School. The Shamrocks had 12 hits and stole six bases while the Giants committed three errors.

“For this group of kids, it’s really special to win,” St. Martha head coach Phil Williams said. “I’ve had these kids since third-grade, so I’ve had them for six years. Six years is a long time. In six years’ time, they’ve won two city championships and been runners-up twice, which means this eighth-grade class is a good group. I probably won’t ever get a chance to coach a group like this again. It’s special.”

The Shamrocks took a 5-1 lead into the top of the fifth inning, then scored three more runs to stretch their lead to seven.

Eric Barry led off the fifth with a single and was replaced by Bennett Clark as a courtesy runner. Austin Murphy reached base when first baseman Evans mishandled a popup, sending Clark to second, and Jacob Morley’s  single loaded the bases.

Zach Williams’ single sent home Clark, and Nathan Jackson replaced Williams as a courtesy runner. Tanner Brown then singled home Murphy before Brandon Pfaadt popped out for the first out of the inning. Brown scored on Nathan Weitlauft’s sacrifice fly for the final run of the inning.

St. Raphael/John Paul II pulled within 8-5 with four runs in the sixth.

Ryan O’Shea led off with a double and Brett Donoho walked, and both advanced on Haydon Korphage’s groundout.  Cameron Short walked to load the bases.

Jack Wessling followed with a three-run double to the left-center-field gap. Max Medley moved Wessling to third with a fielder’s choice and Wessling scored on a wild pitch.

“Give St. Raphael/John Paul credit, they played a great game,” Williams said. “We had them down seven runs and they came back on us and made it close.”

But that wasn’t enough as the Shamrocks added four runs in the seventh.

Pfaadt threw six innings for the Shamrocks and had a one-hitter going through five innings. He wound up giving up five runs and three hits and struck out seven. Williams came in and pitched the seventh inning.

“His pitching performance wasn’t only a great one, he has thrown with his AAU team this week,” Williams said. “He came out here tonight and I asked him before the game if he was OK to pitch. The last thing I wanted to do was wear out his arm. I told him to let me know if he got tired. But he’s a bulldog. He said, ‘No, I want this. This is the championship game.’ After every inning I asked him if his arm was OK and he said, ‘I want it, Coach, I want to pitch.’ He’s just a bulldog. You’ll hear more about him, he’s going to be a heck of a high school player.”

Alex Thorpe started for the Giants and allowed three runs in the first two innings. Medley tossed the remaining five innings and gave up nine runs and nine hits.



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