Germuth, Thunderbolts Roll to Championship
Friday, August 4, 2006
Andrew Germuth has worked on refining his sinker since he earned second-team All-Met honors as a senior at Spalding in 2004. Under the guidance of Coach Bobby St. Pierre this summer in the Cal Ripken Sr. Collegiate Baseball League, Germuth's sinker has gotten even nastier.
Germuth had his out pitch diving last night in the wooden bat league's championship game. The Silver Spring-Takoma Thunderbolts' ace scattered four hits, struck out five and yielded one run in five innings to lead his team to a 13-1 win over the Rockville Express at Blair.
"Bobby has helped me tremendously this year," said Germuth, a junior at Mount St. Mary's. "He just told me to use my strength, sink the ball to both sides [of the plate] and make [hitters] put the ball in play. It's not hard. You don't have to strike everybody out."
The fifth-seeded Thunderbolts won five of six games over the past four days to win the league's double-elimination playoff tournament and their second league championship. After finishing the regular season with a 14-26 record, the Thunderbolts' performance had some team officials wondering aloud, "Where were these guys all season?"
Silver Spring-Takoma's regular season struggles could be attributed to a pitching staff whose collective ERA of 4.69 ranked fifth out of six teams. Last night, however, Germuth and relievers Matt Montgomery and Mike Sufczynski held the second-seeded Express to only four hits.
"We definitely came up big come playoff time," Germuth said. "We put it all together at the end."
The Thunderbolts were just as strong on offense, pounding out a season-high 20 hits. Eight of their nine starters scored and had at least two hits. Catcher Nate Toth (Radford) was 4 for 4 with two runs scored, and first baseman Mike Sheridan, a Gonzaga High graduate now at William & Mary, went 2 for 5 with a pair of runs.
"We knew when we could put something together we could play this well," Sheridan said. "It was frustrating all year long. We weren't getting any breaks. But it seemed like tonight and the last three days that things were falling our way."