CENTREVILLE — Eighteen Post 18 batters turned around and headed back to the dugout Monday evening, June 3, victimized by Caroline Post 29 right-hander Remy Mangum.
Perfect through 6 1/3 innings, Mangum finished with a one-hitter, 18 strikeouts and no walks as Post 29 shut out Kent-Queen Anne’s, 3-0, Monday evening at Queen Anne’s County High.
With Mangum mixing in a cutter and a curve, Post 18 batters couldn’t catch up to his fastball in a dominating performance. Only four Kent-Queen Anne’s hitters put the ball in play and Chance Porter’s grounder in the hole between shortstop and third produced the only hit. Mangum fanned the first seven batters and 11 of the first 12.
“It doesn’t get much better than that, literally one hitter away from a perfect game,” Post 29 manager Ryan Blanchfield said. “I think he had 18 strikeouts, just flat out dominant. I’d say pitching and defense, but it was really about the pitching. Chucky (Ty Scott) made a couple nice plays at short.”
Post 29 improved to 2-0 after a 14-3 victory over Wicomico on Sunday.
Porter pitched well also for Kent-Queen Anne’s but couldn’t match Mangum’s command. Porter scattered five hits and three walks, and allowed only one earned run.
At the plate, Mangum also knocked in a pair of runs. Tyler Stanley scored twice after drawing a walk both times.
Stanley walked with one out in the third and advanced to third on a successful hit-and-run as Jackie Zebron grounded the ball through the infield where the shortstop had vacated to cover second. Mangum followed with an RBI fielder’s choice and Zebron scored on an error after a grounder off the bat of Scott to make it 2-0.
Stanley walked with one out in the fifth and took second on an outfield error on a deep fly to left by Zebron. Mangum then knocked home Stanley with a grounder to left for a base hit.
Those three runs were plenty for Mangum, who struck out the side in order in the first, second, fourth, and sixth innings. Three grounders to shortstop for outs and Porter’s hit in the seventh were Post 18’s only swings that put the ball in play.
Colin Athey reached second base on a fielder’s choice and a wild pitch with two outs in the bottom of the seventh, but Mangum sent the final batter back to the dugout on a called third strike to end the game.
“I was feeling good. I was throwing well,” Mangum said. “He (the home plate umpire) had a great zone, well great for me, big zone. I think both ways, good guy. I just basically tried to throw strikes and if it was there he called it.”
Blanchfield said he likes his team’s makeup this year: “We should be pretty solid. Our pitching staff is going to be solid. We’ve got Remy. Matt Grogan’s going to pitch. Jameson(Covey)’s going to throw for us, Ty (Scott). With Garrett (Nepert) behind the plate, we’re going to be pretty solid up the middle.”
Porter had some help from his catcher Mitch Gunther, who threw out two base runners — Mangum attempting to take third on a wild pitch in the first and Scott trying to steal second in the third.
“I was very impressed with Mangum today. Two aces going at it tonight, good game,” Post 18 manager Chris Fitzgerald said, his team now 0-3.