BLUE DEVIL DISPATCH 5-11-11

Staff Writer
Echo Pilot
Greencastle-Antrim High School senior Autumn Appleby used the final regular season home game of her storied Blue Devil softball career to hurl a 16-strikeout performance over Waynesboro last week. It was the highest strikeout total for a game in her 42-win high school career. Read about it on Page B-2.

SOFTBALL

It’s difficult to imagine a much better regular season week than the Blue Devil softball team (11-3, 9-1 MPC-Colonial) had with wins chalked up against rivals James Buchanan and Waynesboro. However, standing out amongst the smiles this week produced was that of senior pitcher Autumn Appleby, who tossed a 16-strikeout, three-hit shutout to dispatch Waynesboro 10-0. Appleby’s 16 Ks also came in just six innings and was a career-high for a game.

While Appleby was making her last regular season game on the home field a most memorable one, her teammates put up a potent offense, slugging 10 hits led by Tiffany Briggs (3-for-3, triple, double). Seven other Devils had basehits. Diamond Byers (double), Cassey Cordell and Brittany Norling (double) each knocked in two runs. Amanda Wink had a sacrifice fly.

The Blue Devils were nearly as dominating earlier in the week when they blitzed Buchanan, 11-1. This game G-A banged out 11 hits with Wendy Wolff going 3-for-3. Jenna Crunkleton (2-for-2) cracked a two-run homer and Amanda Wink doubled home a pair of runs. Rachel Kline limited JB to four hits and didn’t allow an earned run.

TRACK AND FIELD

On the track the Blue Devil teams were on the edge all week with the girls splitting the two meets with close scores in each and the boys running, jumping and throwing to a deadlock against rival James Buchanan and a defeat of Northern York.

The girls’ team put up a solid front in defeating James Buchanan on its home track by an 83-67 verdict. Earlier in the week the Devils dropped a close 79-5-70.5 meet at Northern.

Nakita Gearhart led the effort against the rival Rockets, winning the javelin and discus and with a personal best leap of five feet, the sophomore added the high jump gold. Danae Timmons (100, 200) and Lauren Powers (800, 1,600) also dominated their events with wins. G-A did not manage a relay win on the day, but took 11 of the 15 events and showed depth for the meet win. Also nabbing firsts were Gretchen Westley (400), Caitlyn Hetrick (3,200), Ashton Rockwell (100 hurdles) and Morgynn McKenzie (shot put). Contributing points to the effort with seconds and thirds were Andrea Hammer, Westley, Amber Crider, Rockwell, Jessica Edwards, Marita Shaffer and Molly Nowell.

In the Northern victory, Westley won the 200 and 400 and Powers again delivered the 800 and 1,600 as did Hetrick in the 3,200. Rockwell won the straight hurdles and Gearhart took the javelin and high jump. G-A’s relay teams in the 400 and 1,600 were victorious. Also producing points were, Hammer, Nowell, Crider, Savannah Fritz and McKenzie.

The G-A boys’ team produced sweeps in four events and captured two of the three relays, including the meet-closing 1,600 tandem, but it wasn’t quite enough to pull past the Rockets who salvaged the 75-75 tie. For the Devils, Alex Yoder won the 100 and 200 and anchored the winning 400 relay team that also included Aaron Bumbaugh, Trentin Dixon and Denton Cordell and the 1,600 relay team with Bumbaugh, Cordell and Greg Boyer. G-A won all six places in the hurdle events, led by Gabe Fridgen (110) and  Boyer (300). Boyer added a second victory in the pole vault. Ben Leitzel got the lone G-A victory in the throws with the discus. With points for seconds and thirds were Dixon, Cordell, Noah Graham, Josh Spoonhour, Daulton Monn, Travis Rawlings, Matt Montedoro, David Spinder, Caleb Bartlett, Tyler Szaflarski and Taylor Blattenberger.

The 93-57 win over Northern was fueled by G-A dominance in the throws and the relays. Leitzel, Spinder and Bartlett went one-two-three in the discus and Spinder, Ronald Stine and Szaflarski the same in the shot put. Cordell and Grant Murray were the top two in the javelin. Cordell, Yoder, Austin Scott and Dixon teamed in the winning 400 relay. Spoonhour, Monn, Brandon Thrush and Danny Combs put together the 3,200 relay win. Yoder again won the 100, but did not compete in the 200. Dixon produced with a win in the event. Boyer was again a double winner with the 300 hurdles and the pole vault. Also claiming firsts were Graham (400), Monn (1,600) and Cody George (high jump). Additional points came from Scott, Bumbaugh, Devin Statler, Spoonhour, Thrush, Montedoro and Fridgen.

Addition: A result was inadvertently omitted from the Stan Morgan Invitational last week. G-A junior Ben Leitzel captured third in the discus with a throw of 119-3.

BASEBALL

It was the best of times and in some ways the worst of times last week as the Blue Devil varsity baseball team sent two rivals packing, but trouble came from an unlikely source in the division. G-A (11-4, 8-4 MPC-Colonial) checked in with wins over James Buchanan (15-6) and Waynesboro (8-4) only to take a blow from an unlikely source as Big Spring left town with a 9-4 win.

The Blue Devils unleashed a 17-hit barrage against the Rockets, led by Denver Cordell with three hits and four RBIs. Cordell also aided the Devils from the pitching mound. Coming on in relief in the fifth inning, Cordell got a double play with just one pitch and didn’t allow a base runner the rest of the way. Starter Denton Ensminger got the win. Chad Miller also lit the offense with a 3-for-5 outing. Cody Ezolt and Devin Schaeffer each that two hits and two RBIs. Danny Stepler knocked in a pair.

G-A capitalized on 13 hits, four errors by the Indians and the arm of freshman Ryan Ricci in its 8-4 win over Waynesboro. Ricci improved to 6-0 with the complete-game victory. Eight Blue Devils had hits in the game, led by three each from Cordell and Ezolt (two RBIs). Devin Schaeffer also knocked home a pair.

Sandwiched in between the emotional wins was a lull when Big Spring came to town and left with a 9-4 divisional victory. The game with a strange scoring line was just the Devils’ second loss in the last 11 games. After the Bulldogs jumped out to a quick 4-0 lead, G-A answered in the second inning when Cody Ezolt went yard with bases loaded for a slam that, of course, knotted the score. Big Spring pitching settled in after that to limited the Devils to three more basehits and their offense got the lead and built on it little by little to produce the five-run victory.

A weekend earlier the Devils won the Red Lion Tournament. Cordell was 6-for-8 at the plate in the event.

The junior varsity Blue Devils rode the arm of starter Thomas Bowers early then pulled away late to claim a 10-4 victory over the visiting Rockets. Bowers threw five innings of one-hit ball striking out five and walking three to pick up the win. Justin Hovey struck out three for the save. Hovey lead the Devil charge at the plate going 3-for-3 with a single, double, triple and 3 RBIs.  Ashtin Byers ended his day with two triples and three RBIs. Jake Crist was also 2-for-3 with a double.

GIRLS’ SOCCER

The Blue Devil soccer team (7-6-2, 5-6-1 MPC-Colonial) might just want to forget last week when nothing went well and three games were added to the loss column. Monday and Tuesday produced back-to-back 3-0 losses to Northern and James Buchanan. Krista Kelly made a dozen saves in the Northern game. Despite even play in shots on goal at 16, Buchanan made good on three while the Devils came up empty. Kelly added seven saves.

Alicia Crider got G-A on the board against a 2-0 Gettysburg lead late in the first half, however the second half did nothing to change the score. Gettysburg had a slight advantage in shots, 11-8, and in corner kicks, 4-1. Kelly made seven saves.

In junior varsity action, G-A and JB played to a scoreless tie.

MIDDLE SCHOOL

Volleyball

The eighth-grade G-AMS team took Faust to three games, however dropped the match by scores of (20-25, 25-23, 13-15). Brooke Zeger connected with three kills and Abbey Eich tallied four digs. Claudia Hissong had five assists and two aces.

In seventh-grade action, the Devils were taken in straight games of 25-21 and 25-22. Deidre Conway had two kills and two aces in the match.

Caitlyn Hetrick has been G-A’s long distance leader all season.