WESTMINSTER, Md. – Washington (Md.) had the final say in back-and-forth Centennial Conference (CC) baseball opener, plating a single run in the ninth inning to defeat McDaniel 7-6 on Tuesday.
Patrick Christopher (Union Beach, N.J./St. John Vianney) led a 13-hit attack for the Green Terror (11-4, 0-1 CC) with a 4-for-4 showing that included a pair of triples.
John Rolewicz and Scott Matthews led the Shoremen (16-2, 1-0 CC) with three hits apiece – part of a 15-hit afternoon.
Tied at 6-all entering the ninth, Ryan Normoyle poked a one-out single over the second baseman's head and into right field.
Rolewicz followed with a ground ball through the left side to put runners on first and second.
After a failure to execute the sacrifice, Washington pulled off the double steal to put both runners in scoring position. Pat Kinsella's ground out scored Normoyle from third with the eventual winning run.
McDaniel went in order in the bottom of the inning after a bang-bang play at first to start the inning in which Ricky LaSota (Burtonsville, Md./Paint Branch) was called out.
A first-inning error helped stake the Shoremen to an early 3-0 lead.
With one out, Nick Marinelli beat out an infield single before Normoyle reached on an errant throw that went out of play, allowing both runners to move up a base.
Rolewicz followed with a bouncing ball up the middle that took a bad hop over the shortstop, allowing both runners to score.
After a fielder's choice put Tyler Cotterell on first with two outs, Scott Matthews followed with a double to the gap for a 3-0 lead.
Christopher led off the bottom of the first with a triple to the wall in left-center before scoring on a Tyler Jackow (Colonia, N.J./Colonia) sacrifice fly.
After a Joe Fiore (Point Pleasant, N.J./Point Beach) single and fielder's choice to lead off the home third, Christopher ripped his second triple of the game – this time to right-center to trim the deficit to 3-2.
LaSota followed with a two-out triple that got over the right fielder's head to score Christopher. James Chiorello (East Windsor, N.J./Lawrenceville Prep) followed with a single to score LaSota and give himself a 4-3 lead on the mound.
In the sixth, Matthews reached on a single before scoring when a two-out pop up on the left side wasn't caught to tie the game.
The Green Terror responded in the bottom of the frame when Marshall Betts (Berlin, Md./Stephen Decatur) led off with a single up the middle.
Jimmy Najera (Fort Washington, Md./DeMatha) then pushed his bunt past the pitcher to put runners at first and second.
After a fly out, Najera was called out at second on a close play to put runners at the corners.
Brandon Hayward (Salisbury, Md./J.M. Bennett) followed with a single to score Betts before Christopher beat out a single to the first baseman to load the bases but the inning ended that way.
Back-to-back singles from Cotterell and Matthews put runners at first and second before a double steal put runners at second and third for Dennis Thomas, who grounded out but got pinch-runner Kinsella in from third.
Daniel Wu successfully executed the suicide squeeze play to put the Shoremen on top, 6-5.
Najera led off the bottom of the inning with a double before taking third on a Chris Longo (Monroe, N.Y./Monroe Woodbury) sacrifice bunt and scoring on a Fiore sacrifice fly to tie the game.
Hayward followed with the team's fourth triple of the game before Washington elected to offer the intentional pass to Christopher, who stole second but the Green Terror could not take the lead.
Betts and Najera each had two hits.
McDaniel and Washington conclude the home-and-home series in Chestertown on Friday. Game time is 3:30 p.m.