Bishop Gorman High of Las Vegas has been a hot topic in high school baseball the last few years thanks to a strong core of players that contributed to four straight Nevada 4-A state titles. Recently the Gaels have reloaded instead of rebuilding, but losing stars like first baseman Jeff Malm to graduation will always make others wonder when they will finally slip and miss out on another title.
That time nearly came last week. Bishop Gorman was up against Galena High (Reno, Nev.) on Friday. The tournament was double elimination and both teams were 1-0. Bishop Gorman was on the ropes right away, down 10-1 going into the bottom of the second inning. But the Gaels made it 10-7 after two. Galena scored seven more in the third and one in the fourth. After four innings Galena was up 18-10. Four more for Galena in the fifth made it 22-10 and Bishop Gorman was facing a mercy rule defeat. But the Gaels answered with 10 runs in the fifth and four in the sixth to seal a 24-22 victory.
The wind was blowing hard and out. Reports were they were in excess of 30-40 mph.
"We talked after the second inning, and we were down 10-1, and we said, 'Hey, with the wind and our offense, we're going to be in this game,' " Bishop Gorman head coach Chris Sheff told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. "And I actually had goose bumps in the second inning, because I really felt like we were going to win the game."
Senior infielder Johnny Field went 2-for-5 with two home runs and freshman outfielder Kenny Meimerstorf also went 2-for-5 with two home runs.
Las Vegas' Rancho High made its way through the loser's bracket to face Bishop Gorman on Saturday. Rancho won the first game on 4-2 to force a decisive final game, but the Gaels flexed their muscles for a final time in 2010 and posted a 13-0 win for their fifth straight state championship.
Other Playoff Notes
• Florida completed four of its six state tournaments last week. Flanagan High of Pembroke Pines won the 6-A title while The Bolles School of Jacksonville won its second straight 3-A championship. The 4-A matchup was a significant one as Tampa's Jesuit High faced Southwest Ranches' Archbishop McCarthy High. The game featured two Top 200 Prospects for the 2010 draft as well as a standout underclassmen. Archbishop McCarthy's lineup featured shortstop Nick Castellanos, a possible first-round pick. Jesuit had lefthander Daniel Gibson, who is rated a fifth-round talent, as well as shortstop Lance McCullers Jr., a prospect for the 2012 draft. Gibson took the loss in the game, his first of the season. The Miami Herald had a game wrap-up here.
• Jameson Taillon's team, The Woodlands (Texas) High, were bounced in a first-round upset. Taillon's final record was 8-1, 1.78. He struck out 114 and walked 21 in 62 innings.
• Manny Machado's Brito Miami Private made it to the region finals, but lost to Highlands Christian Academy of Pompano Beach, Fla. Machado finished his season hitting .639 with 27 doubles, 12 home runs and 56 RBIs in 86 at-bats.
• Zach Lee and Matt Lipka were also victims of an early exit as McKinney (Texas) High fell to Rockwall (Texas) High.
• California playoffs are underway this week and the spotlight is on the ever-strong Southern Section. The section tournament features several draft prospects including: righthander Peter Tago of Dana Hills High, Dana Point, Calif.; lefthander Griffin Murphy of Redlands (Calif.) East Valley High; righthander Taijuan Walker of Yucaipa (Calif.) High; righthander Scott Frazier of Upland (Calif.) High; outfielder Austin Wilson of Harvard-Westlake High, Los Angeles; outfielder Michael Lorenzen and shortstop Dominic Ficcociello of Fullerton (Calif.) High.
• Third baseman/righthander Kaleb Cowart is making his case for Player of the Year while leading his Cook High (Adel, Ga.) squad to the Georgia 2-A semi-finals. Cowart is hitting .652 with 10 home runs and 55 RBIs in 92 at-bats while sporting a 10-0, 0.59 mark with 96 strikeouts in 59 innings on the mound.
• North Gwinnett High (Suwanee, Ga.) third baseman Christopher Hawkins, a fourth-round talent, is hitting .513 with 14 home runs in 113 at-bats while the Bulldogs are in the Georgia 5-A semi-finals.
• He hasn't started the postseason yet, but Germantown Friends Academy (Philadelphia) lefthander Jesse Biddle recently pitched a complete game, striking out 19 while allowing just one walk and three hits.
• A coach in Mississippi has taken his team's elimination to court to appeal the violation of a pitching rule.
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