Athletics News

Baseball

’Jacks win in extra innings, split with BCCC
Larson plates game-winner; No. 1-in-the-nation Frederick awaits

WYE MILLS – The Skipjacks are baseball escape artists. That’s the only way to explain how they dodged defeat in consecutive games after trailing in extra innings.

Baltimore City Community College took a 4-3 lead on Rangel Betances’ RBI single in the top of the eighth inning in the first game of Sunday’s doubleheader at Chesapeake College. The Skipjacks, however, tied the game in the bottom of the eighth on a run-scoring single by J.D. Donalds and claimed a 5-4 victory on Zach Larson’s ninth-inning, RBI double.

"I was really proud of the way they came back not only to tie it in regulation but to tie it again in extras," said Chesapeake head coach Frank Szymanski, whose team forced extra innings on Larson’s sacrifice fly in the bottom of the seventh. "That was a big win for us."

The Skipjacks rallied from a 4-3, 12th-inning deficit to beat Oakton Community College, 5-4, on Jordan Gowe’s two-run triple last Wednesday.

"Our guys just never give up," said Szymanski.

Baltimore City salvaged a split with a 5-0 victory in the nightcap as Marcus Smith pitched a five-hit complete game. The Panthers scored all the runs they needed in a three-run third that included RBI singles by Devin Hill and Jose Garcia.

"Smith pitched a great game for Baltimore City," said Szymanski. "He kept us off balance, changed speeds, and we hit too many balls in the air for outs."

The Skipjacks (6-11-1 overall, 2-0-1 Maryland JuCo) now have an historic opportunity, hosting No. 1-in-the-nation Frederick Community College (22-0, 4-0) Tuesday at 3 p.m. CCBC-Catonsville (13-5, 6-0), Frederick and Chesapeake are the only teams unbeaten in Maryland JuCo contests this year. (Baltimore City is not playing a league schedule this season.)

"We’re looking forward to the opportunity," said Szymanski of hosting Frederick.

Chesapeake appeared in control of Sunday’s opener, thanks to a two-run third inning featuring a run-scoring double by Larson (2-for-4, two doubles, three RBI). Skipjack starter Nik Nowottnick took that 2-0 lead into the sixth, but Baltimore City jumped on Nowottnick for three sixth-inning runs to take a 3-2 lead. Yuris Martinez doubled in one run and Andrew Campbell tripled home another.

Larson’s bases-loaded, one-out sacrifice fly off starter Dax Kirkman in the bottom of the seventh created a 3-3 tie. Kirkman then struck out Ricky Brady to send the game into extra innings.

Kirkman couldn’t hold a 4-3 lead in the bottom of the eighth, issuing a leadoff walk to Tucker Tobin, who stole second and scored on Donalds’ RBI double. Willie Garcia, who relieved Kirkman to start the ninth, gave up a leadoff walk to Robert Potts to start Chesapeake’s game-winning rally.

After Potts stole second, Garcia struck out Jordan Gowe. Larson then ended the game with his run-scoring double.

Jake Yarber, the third of three Chesapeake pitchers, earned the victory by allowing just one run on three hits with two strikeouts over the final 2 2/3 innings.

"Jake came in and controlled the situation," said Szymanski. "He got into one jam (yielding Betances’ RBI hit in the eighth), but was able to get out of it giving up only one run."

Garcia – who had two hits in Game 2 – and Campbell each had a pair of hits for Baltimore City in the opener.

Cole Tyndall pitched an inning in relief of Nowottnick, getting the Skipjacks out of the sixth trailing by just one run.

Spencer Gillis took the complete-game loss for the Skipjacks in Game 2, but only two of the five runs he allowed were earned. He threw a six-hitter with four strikeouts and just one walk.

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