May 27, 2010
Hanover H.S. – Henrico (14-8) earned its third trip to the Central Region Playoffs in the last four years with a 7-1 win over Hanover (17-5) in the Capital District Tournament championship game. Senior left-hander Paul Bateera threw a complete game, five-hitter for the “Warriors.”
Bateera was also three for four at the plate with two doubles to lead a 10-hit Henrico offensive output. Treyvon Robinson and Landon Prentiss also contributed doubles of their own.
2010 Capital District Tournament Champs
“Senior leadership. There’s nothing better,” said Henrico head coach Ken Schrad. “Paul, Landon, and Michael [Mansfield] were part of those teams that went to the regional tourney in 2007 and 2008. They were determined to return as seniors in 2010.”
The first two times Henrico and Hanover met this year, the “Warriors” defense faltered, committing four errors in the first game (6-1 loss) and five in the second (11-7 loss). “We talked a lot yesterday about showing Hanover our best defensive effort and maybe, just maybe, things would turn out different,” said Schrad. They certainly did.
The statement play came in the bottom of the first with Henrico holding a 2-0 lead. Bryan Johansen led off with a single for Hanover. Following a fly out to center field, Eric Mayers smashed a hard ball down the third base line that Mansfield snatched on a full-stretch dive. He popped up, and despite throwing 116 pitches Tuesday, threw a rocket across the diamond to record the second out of the inning. A pop up to first followed and the tone for the game had been set.
Henrico got its first two runs after two outs in the first inning. Jordan Doggett singled up the middle. Mansfield reached on an error. Prentiss smashed a double to right center scoring both. The quick start came off Hanover starter Jacob Smith, who was also the starter on Tuesday night against Atlee, pitching into the fifth inning in that game.
Hanover managed its lone run of the game in the second. Andrew Kinzner singled. An errant pick attempt allowed him to advance to second. He moved up to third on a single by Zack Broaddus. Kinzner scored when Lew Johnson hit into a fielder’s choice. A fly ball to right field ended the inning on the catch by Nick Toombs.
Henrico added four runs in the top of the third. Robinson walked. He raced all the way around the bases on Bateera’s double. That chased Smith and Chris Childress came on in relief.
Doggett greeted him to the game with a single putting runners on the corners. With Doggett on the move, Andrew Props singled to score Bateera and Doggett. Props scored when a drive to center by Nick Toombs got by the center fielder. The score was 6-1.
Henrico picked up one more run in the fourth off Hanover’s third reliever Ryan Cooper. With one out, Robinson doubled. Bateera singled and Doggett walked to load the bases.
Another pitching change brought Reece Chalkley to the mound. While delivering a pitch, Chalkley caught a cleat on the rubber and the stumble caused him to balk. Robinson trotted home. Chaulkely kept his composure and retired the side with no further damage.
While Henrico put runners in scoring position in both the fifth and sixth innings, no runs scored. Hanover’s Daniel Burroughs got the “Hawks” out of the sixth after Chalkley had given up a double to Bateera and a walk to Doggett. He struck out the side in Henrico’s top of the seventh.
Bateera, meanwhile, was throwing strikes and letting his defense do its job. Knizner managed a double in the fourth. Mayers did the same in the sixth. But, all other Hanover batters were eliminated by sure-handed defensive plays, especially by Prentiss at shortstop.
Prentiss slammed the door shut on Hanover in the bottom of the seventh. Pinch hitter Tyler Mull grounded out to short. Broaddus hit a chopper to the third base side that was mishandled by Mansfield. But, Johnson grounded up the middle that Prentiss grabbed, stepped on second to erase Broaddus and threw to Cody Spain at first for the game ending double play that set the “Warrior” celebration in motion.
“What an outstanding performance by all of our players,” said Schrad. “They’ve worked so hard and tonight it showed.”
Bateera threw 75 pitches in seven innings of which 57 were for strikes. He was ahead in the count on 22 of 26 batters. He struck out two and walked none. When the ball was put in play by Hanover hitters, the “Warriors” converted on 32 of 33 chances (20 put outs & 12 assists).
The victory sends the “Warriors” on the road for its Regional quarter-final game. Henrico plays Douglas Freeman, the Colonial District regular season champion, on Tuesday at Kenny Moore Field at Freeman High School [6pm].