The South River baseball team has laid early claim to the title of best team in the county, as the Seahawks have posted wins over Arundel, Southern and Severna Park, and an overall record of 6-0 through April 7. The Seahawks have allowed only six runs to the opposition all season, outscoring opponents 55-6.
Following a 13-0 romp over Southern in their first contest after spring break, the Seahawks got stiffer competition in Severna Park on April 5 but managed to edge the Falcons 2-1 on the strength of another stellar performance by Mitchell. The senior fanned nine Severna Park batters and got timely RBI hits by Cox and Jake Gratz to push South River to 6-0 on the year.
Despite losing to South River in the county opener for both schools, Arundel nonetheless has the talent and depth to challenge any team in the county and region. On April 3, Wildcats starting pitcher Colin Simpkins needed just 60 pitches to shut down Annapolis on April 3, and Arundel put together a solid day of offense to mercy rule the visiting Panthers, 10-0. Cooper Hibbs’ 2-3 day, Mike Centrella’s three-run home run in the third inning and Ethan Plummer’s double and game-ending, bases-clearing triple in the bottom of the fifth highlighted the Wildcats’ strong day at the plate, and Will O’Hara initiated two double plays behind Simpkins to keep the Panthers off the scoreboard.
Arundel was clipped by Broadneck, 3-2, in their next game on April 5, but with solid wins over Glenelg and Hammond already notched, and a strong returning core, the Wildcats should have the pitching and offensive firepower to compete with any team in the wide-open county.
Coming off a year in which they finished 20-6 and fell to Northwest in extra innings in an epically exciting 4A state championship game, the Wildcats hope for a return to the tournament and will seek their first state title since 2006 and 11th overall. The deep pitching rotation of Simpkins, Hibbs, Tate Confer, Mike Hinely and Steven Ghiardi will keep opponents in check, while Hibbs, Ghiardi, Hinely, Plummer, Syeed Mahdi, Kyle Brandt, Mike Heverling, Mike Centrella and Bradley Hovatter give the team a strong lineup from top to bottom.