HARRISONBURG, VA., JUNE 2 -- Louisa scored four unearned runs to spoil a three-hit, 12-strikeout performance by Broad Run's Scott Schultz today, giving the Lions their first Virginia AA baseball title with a 4-1 victory at Memorial Stadium.
The Lions' victory avenged an 11-2 pasting at the hands of the Spartans in the Region II finals one week ago.
"They were plays we usually make," lamented Spartans Coach Wayne Todd, referring to his team's four errors. "Scott pitched a hell of a ballgame. He's a pitcher with guts who'll give you everything he's got."
Schultz, who threw 118 pitches Wednesday night in a 4-0 quarterfinal triumph over York, did not have his best fastball today, according to Todd. He entered the final with an earned run average of 0.55 and improved on that, but still lost.
Louisa's Jeff Hunter (11-0) also was stellar, matching the better-known Schultz pitch for pitch, allowing four hits and striking out five. The left-handed Hunter estimated that 90 percent of his pitches were curveballs.
"He throws 50 miles per hour and throws outs," Todd said. "His defense played behind him. They're a very well-disciplined team."
Broad Run (16-6) took a short-lived lead in the first. Schultz led off with a walk, then advanced to third on Ian Paterson's double. Willie Caton's sacrifice fly to right brought home Paterson, scoring the Spartans' only run.
The Lions (21-2-1) came back with two runs in the bottom half of the inning. Stacy Shelton reached on an infield hit, and scored on an error. Then Sam Jordan, who reached on a fielder's choice, came home on a passed ball by Mike Belcher.
Shelton scored his second run on another miscue by the Spartans two innings later to extend Louisa's advantage to 3-1.
Louisa put the game away in the sixth. Steve Blankenship led off with a single, stole second and went to third on an error. He scurried home with the fourth run when Schultz delivered a wild pitch.
Broad Run mounted a bit of rally in the sixth, as Schultz singled and went to second on a passed ball by Shelton. But when Paterson drilled a liner down the third-base line, Jordan more than met the challenge. The third baseman knocked the ball down, kept it in front of him, and threw Paterson out with a throw to first that Doug Straley dug out of the dirt. Caton's pop-up ended the brief, and final, Broad Run threat.
Todd promised the Spartans would be back next year. "Any time you get a little taste of it," he said, "you always want to come back."