News Harford Halts Lakers Hot Baseball Streak - Garrett College
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Campus News

March 26th, 2024

Harford halts Lakers' hot baseball streak

Owls' sweep comes after GC went 8-2 in previous 10 contests

Harford Community College swept the host Lakers, 12-2 and 9-1, Sunday afternoon to cool off a Garrett College baseball team that had won eight of its previous 10 games.

Ehi Okojie doubled twice, scored twice, and drove in three runs in the opener for Harford (22-6 overall, 9-1 Maryland JuCo). Manny Santana (run, RBI), Jesse Jaconski (run, three walks), and Tariq Talley (two runs, walk) each had two hits in the nightcap for the Owls.

Winning pitcher Gilbert Sanders spaced six hits in a five-inning, complete-game win with two strikeouts in the opener. Easton Rhoten (3-for-5, two runs in the doubleheader) had GC's only hit against David Catanese, who also threw a complete game in Game 2.

GC (10-13, 2-4) had outscored its opposition, 99-56, in the previous 10 games while going 8-2. The Lakers came into Sunday's doubleheader hoping to move above .500 for the first time this season.

"Early on, we were speeding the game up in the batter's box," said GC head coach Eric Hallenbeck. "The last 10 games or so, we've slowed the game down. Hitting, especially in clutch situations, is contagious."

Rhoten played a major role in GC's revival, hitting .411 during the Lakers' 8-2 run. He currently leads GC in on-base percentage (.512), slugging percentage (.561), and hits (27), and is tied with Collin Reed for the team lead in runs batted in (14).

Rhoten – whose seventh-inning grand slam last Monday defeated Chesapeake as GC split a doubleheader with the Skipjacks – is second in team batting average at .409. Lance Vickers had a hit that was nearly as dramatic, delivering a walk-off single last Friday to cap a three-run seventh inning as GC defeated Anne Arundel Community College, 9-8, to salvage a doubleheader split.

Hallenbeck said Harford – which plays in NJCAA Region 20 Division I – will be one of the top teams in Maryland JuCo.

"Harford is always a solid club," said Hallenbeck, whose squad plays in NJCAA Region 20 Division II. "We were playing Games 9 and 10 of the week and we were pretty banged up. Four of our normal starters were out against them."