Photo by Colin MurphyCameron Clark pitched Severna Park to victory over Northeast on March 27.
Photo by Colin MurphyJake Hallett slid safely into home during Severna Park's 9-1 win over Northeast.
Severna Park Baseball Off To Fast Start
Severna Park baseball is out in front of the county to start the season, having gone 5-0 through March.
A 3-0 week to close March featured strong pitching performances by Cameron Clark in a 9-1 win over Northeast, Luke Childress in an 18-4 win over Glen Burnie and Matt Glady in a 5-0 win over previously unbeaten Old Mill.
Head coach Eric Milton said the team has the benefit of strong pitching and a deep rotation entering this spring, when all county teams will be dealing with new pitch-count regulations that limit the amount of pitches players can throw per outing and prescribes mandatory rest periods between pitching appearances based on number of pitches thrown.
“Right now, [Clark, Childress and Glady] are top three, but we’ve got a lot of pitchers who can fill in here and there, and we have 10 guys who we can throw out there with the pitch count thing, so we’re deep in that area,” said Milton following the Falcons’ victory over Northeast. “When your starters can go five or six innings and get deep into the game, that helps as well.”
That was the case in all three victories during the final week of March. Clark overcame a rocky first inning against the Eagles to settle in and cruise for six innings, using his curveball to get ahead of batters and spotting fastballs low for strikes.
“It was good to just get the first one out of the way,” said Clark, a junior, after winning his first start. “A lot of pitches, more than I wanted, but it got the job done. The first inning was a little rough, but after that I started hitting the corners, and my curveball worked well, so that was really my main pitch today was the curveball. It felt good to get out there.”
Scott Huntley had two hits against the Eagles, including a bases-loaded, three-RBI double in the sixth inning that firmly put the game out of reach. RBIs by Kody Milton, Jake Hallet and two by Drew Jeffries rounded out the Falcons’ victory in Pasadena.
Childress followed two days later with a solid outing against the Gophers and got the mercy-rule win as the lineup provided plenty of offense. Patrick Sullivan drove in three runs, while Hallet, Luke Guy and George Lesher all had two RBIS and Ryan Key, AJ Weyant and Ryan Nelson knocked in runs.
Glady moved to 2-0 with a complete-game, four-hit, five-strikeout, one-walk gem against the Patriots, who were unbeaten and coming off a 13-5 win over Arundel two days prior, on March 30. Lesher came through with two RBIs in support, while Huntley, Hallet and Clark all drove in a run in the victory.
Huntley, who has ignited the offense from the leadoff spot, said the lineup spots vacated by last year’s strong graduating class have been aptly filled as the Falcons have looked strong offensively and on the mound.
“Coming from last year, we lost Trae Singleton, Stephen Boushell and Spencer Dietrich, but we still have a bunch of guys to power our offense and string together some hits,” said Huntley. “We can run on teams this year. We’re a lot faster, and we’re hitting the ball better. And as long as we provide runs, no one should really hit off us.”
The unforgiving county baseball landscape doesn’t get easier in the near term. Severna Park faces Chesapeake, North County and Arundel in the first week of April; Chesapeake is loaded, and the Cougars and Falcons will be glad to avoid each other in the 3A and 4A playoffs, respectively.
Clark said simply that the team wants to maintain a high standard.
“Really, no mistakes, error-less ball, and keep hitting the ball,” said Clark. “We have a lot of confidence. We have expectations to live up to, and we’re staying one pitch at a time, one game at a time.”