Focus on Sports
'Jacks outlast PG to again hit 25-win plateau

Posted on Friday, April 28, 2006

LARGO – A 25-win season is to college baseball what a 20-win season is to college basketball – a standard of excellence against which teams measure their performance.

Chesapeake College reached that gold standard for the third consecutive season Tuesday afternoon, handing host Prince George´s Community College a 9-7 loss. Brad Brainer, Will Delawter, and Kellen Sheperd each went 2-for-5 and drove in a run as the Skipjacks (25-9 overall, 13-7 Maryland JuCo) won their third straight game.

"It´s a tribute to the players," said Chesapeake head coach Frank Szymanski of the 2006 team´s 25-win season. "They´ve been able to grasp the concept of Chesapeake College baseball – incorporating the academics and the baseball and putting it all together."

The Skipjacks – battling CCBC-Dundalk, Cecil, and Frederick for the next four regional seeds after runaway state and regional leader Allegany – now play three straight games with huge Region XX Division II playoff implications against Dundalk (24-14, 19-5) and Frederick (25-14, 13-8).

Fourth-place Chesapeake (9-6 in games that count in the Region XX Division II standings) travels to second-place CCBC-Dundalk (17-4) Thursday for a 3 p.m. game. The Skipjacks then travel to Frederick Saturday for a noon doubleheader against the fifth-place Cougars (9-7).

Maryland JuCo leader Allegany (31-6, 22-2) is in first place in Region XX Division II with a 14-1 record while Cecil Community College holds third place at 13-5.

"It´s a very big week for the ball club," said Szymanski after Tuesday´s win. "This was a positive way to get started."

Chesapeake took the lead for good with a six-run third inning that broke a scoreless tie. Chris Cirillo had a two-run single, Delawter (double) and Brainer had RBI hits, and Justin Sousa plated a run with a bases-loaded walk off losing pitcher Todd Harrington during the third-inning explosion.

The Skipjacks still led by six runs (8-2) after the top of the fifth, but PG made things interesting with a three-run sixth and a ninth-inning run that got the Owls within 9-7. Justin Felgenhouer, the third of four Skipjack pitchers, improved to 5-0 by yielding one hit in 2 1/3 innings while Justin Martin earned his third save by yielding one hit over the final inning and two-thirds.

Delawter started but pitched only three innings – both to keep him fresh for this weekend and get some other pitchers some mound time.

"We don´t want to look too far ahead, but we´re trying to get our rotation set up for the next three games," explained Szymanski. "We also haven´t played in almost a week, so we wanted to get some guys in the game."

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