Delco starts Carpenter Cup with arm up on Delaware South

PHILADELPHIA — Looking down the Delaware County Carpenter Cup roster, the veteran experience of the squad is glaring.

Nowhere is that more apparent than on the mound, producing a simple blueprint: When the team can account for a majority of a game with tenacious senior arms with the experience of leading a rare trip to Citizens Bank Park, wins naturally follow.

Delco executed that plan to perfection in its opener Tuesday, limiting Delaware South to three hits in a 7-3 win.

The 27 outs were divvied up at nine each — to starter and nominal winning pitcher Ashton Raines of Strath Haven, Penncrest’s Rob Brown and Conestoga’s Tim Miller.

The former two All-Central League arms were on the squad last year, part of a group that won two games and made the semis at Citizens Bank. That taste of success has the 12 seniors participating this year hungry to get back to the big-league park.

“I had to set the tone early on, and we have a lot of younger guys,’ Brown said. “It gives them the confidence that we can play with anyone, starting out strong. … It’s a great experience, and now we’re trying to pass it on to the younger guys so that they can get the same experience.’

Spreading the wealth means winning games, and the hurlers handled that with ease Tuesday. Raines got into some trouble in the third inning, navigating a shrinking strike zone and serving up a two-run double to Smyrna’s Josh Gillis that served as Delaware South’s first hit.

Brown allowed a leadoff hit to Gillis in the sixth that turned into a run after retiring the first six batters he had faced, but that’s all he’d surrender.

“It’s just really attacking, getting ahead early in the count which gave me a lot of room to nibble, throw whatever and get them to expand the zone,’ Brown said.

Miller allowed two baserunners in the ninth but never allowed the Southern First Staters to mount a serious charge.

That efficiency on the mound seemed contagious, spilling into a strong defensive effort backing the pitchers and plenty of momentum to carry into the batter’s box.

“It’s a lot of fun because everyone’s really good and can hit their spots,’ Haverford catcher Drew Fowler said. “It’s really easy because they’re all welcoming and a lot of them are going to go on to pitch in college, so it’s an honor to catch them.’

While the Delaware South bats were hushed, the Delco bats started and never stopped. They recorded a hit in every inning, 13 in total. Despite stranding 11 runners (including eight in scoring position), they pushed across runs in five innings, including four of the last five.

A three-spot in the third capitalized on a pair of Delaware South errors, with Penncrest’s Matt Briner and Harriton’s Tristan Kevitch notching RBIs. Kevitch hit a sac fly in the fifth that chased home Ben Faso after the Garnet Valley outfielder bashed an opposite-field double.

Faso’s replacement, Jona Siegel of Conestoga, thumped a triple and scored in the seventh on Nick Gorman’s sac fly, and the Springfield DH Gorman tripled in the ninth before scoring on an RBI single by Sean Menold of Interboro.

“I think everyone put the ball in play, and when that happens, good things happen,’ said Fowler, who joined Siegel among the multi-hit crowd. “Timely hitting, and a few good bounces here and there made a difference.’

The early success only reinforces the mindset that Delco entered with: They believe they have the talent to get back to Citizens Bank Park for more than just one loss, and they intend to prove it.

“I think everyone’s motivated to get to Citizens Bank,’ said Fowler, a junior and one of the newcomers. “And even though I haven’t been a part of it, I want to have that experience and playing in a major league stadium.’

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply