This past Saturday at Ripken Stadium in Aberdeen, and at the University of Maryland at College Park, an historic day took place involving four schools on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. Three baseball teams and one softball team were all crowned state champions on Saturday. As far as anyone knows, it was the first time four schools from the Eastern Shore all won titles on the same day.
In Class 1A, St. Michaels Middle/High School’s Saints shut out first-time state playoff participant Patterson Mill 4-0 at Ripken Stadium. For the Saints, the win represented their third state title in four years. The Saints finished the season with a record of 22-3. Next up, the North Caroline Bulldogs won the class 2A title by defeating Lansdowne by the same identical 4-0 score. For the Bulldogs, it was their first state title since 1998. Both title runs were similar in that the the Bulldogs won the championship game with an outstanding pitching effort from a senior and guidance from a first-year head coach. The Bulldogs finished the year 17-6; one of their victories included a win over the 1A champ Saints. Saturday’s final game at Ripken Stadium featured undefeated J.M. Bennett’s Clippers outlasting LaPlata’s Warriors in eight innings for the 3A title. The Clippers finished their season 22-0, winning the Bayside Championship over St. Michaels just prior to the state playoffs. For me, the Saints victory was the sweetest as I am an alum, but the victories by Denton’s Bulldogs and Salisbury’s Clippers were sweet as well for fans of Eastern Shore sports.
Finally, in College Park, Easton’s Lady Warriors won their sixth state title since 2000 with an 8-5 victory over Lansdowne. Easton’s victory made it 2 for 2 for Talbot County’s High Schools (St. Michaels being the other). Easton softball has always been a formidable foe, even as this year’s team wasn’t expected to be quite as good as last year’s squad, which also won the state title in one of the most dominant season’s ever in high school softball. The four state championships capped off a great season of baseball and softball on the Shore; congratulations to all four squads for competing and succeeding at the highest level in the state.