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Baseball

Skipjacks rout PG for 25th victory
Tuesday´s league action moves Chesapeake back into first

WYE MILLS, April 20 – It´s officially scoreboard-watching time for the Maryland Junior College Athletic Conference baseball title contenders.

Chesapeake College routed winless Prince George´s Community College, 12-1, Tuesday afternoon as Justin Armiger went 4-for-4 with five RBI, but the day´s most important game took place on the western shore. Allegany College, which had moved percentage points ahead of Chesapeake and into first place over the weekend, dropped a 9-7 decision to Montgomery College/Germantown to vault the Skipjacks back into the league´s top spot.

Allegany (23-11 overall, 13-5 league) now has a .722 league winning percentage compared to a conference-best .769 winning percentage for the Skipjacks (25-5, 10-3). More important, Chesapeake once again has a two-game cushion on the Trojans in the loss column.

Chesapeake head coach Frank Szymanski said he and his players talked before Tuesday´s game about the importance of not looking past the Owls (0-20, 0-16).

"We talked about no letdowns," said Szymanski after Ryan Morse threw a complete-game six-hitter to pick up the pitching victory. "Good things happen for teams that play hard, and the guys came out and gave it a great effort."

Several other Tuesday contests created shifts in the upper end of the state standings. Frederick Community College (17-11, 12-5) defeated Hagerstown Community College, 14-8, to slip past CCBC-Dundalk and Baltimore City Community College into third place. Dundalk (14-12, 12-6) dropped an 8-7 decision to CCBC-Essex, while CCBC-Catonsville (14-14, 12-6) handed Baltimore City (19-13, 14-7) a 2-1 defeat.

Chesapeake, which used Tuesday´s win to reach the 25-victory plateau for the third straight season, now faces four consecutive games on three playing dates against contending teams. The immediate challenge is Dundalk, which handed Chesapeake a 6-1 loss earlier this season.

"It´s a big game for the team and for the college," said Szymanski, whose team hosts Dundalk Thursday at 3 p.m. "It´s a huge region game (both teams compete in NJCAA Division II Region XX) and they got us the first time at their place. We need to come out ready to play."

The Skipjacks then play a 3 p.m. game Friday at resurgent Anne Arundel Community College (14-10, 10-7). Chesapeake then hosts Allegany College Saturday in a 1 p.m. doubleheader that could be a first-place showdown, depending upon the outcome of the Dundalk and Anne Arundel contests.

"It´s a big week for us, in terms of both the state and region standings," said Szymanski.

Chesapeake actually had to come from behind against Prince George´s, which took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning. The Skipjacks took care of that problem with a five-run second inning built around three walks off PG pitcher David Dazroat, Armiger´s three-run triple, and a run-scoring single by Robbie Miller (3-for-3, two RBI, stolen base).

Brett Ireland was 2-for-3. Morse struck out three and walked none.

Szymanski said hitting the 25-win plateau for the third consecutive year was "a tribute to our players and how hard they work."

Chesapeake will throw undefeated sophomore Bryan Brainer (4-0) at the Lions in tomorrow´s showdown. Chesapeake split with Dundalk last year and took two-of-three from the Lions in 2003.

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