From the HCC sports desk:
Harford Men’s Tennis Finishes in Tie for 11th, Wins Two Matches at National Tournament
PLANO, Texas—The Harford men’s tennis team will finish in a tie for 11th place with three points at the Division-III NJCAA National Tournament after its final doubles team was eliminated from competition on Wednesday. Freshman Walker Bazemore (Churchville, Md./C. Milton Wright) and sophomore Ben Wade (Joppatowne, Md./Joppatowne) won their semifinal match in the consolation draw of Flight 3 doubles, but fell in the finals on Wednesday at Collin College.
The Fighting Owls duo dispatched Broome’s Craig Hebbard and Gerald Terela, 6-2, 6-1 to advance to the finals of the consolation draw against Mercer’s Juan Ramirez and Matt Romano, falling to the second-seeded team, 6-3, 1-6, 10-3.
Harford’s only other match on day three of the tournament came in the Flight 2 doubles consolation draw, where freshman Marc Donars (Joppa, Md./Harford Tech) and sophomore Steve Heagy (Fallston, Md./Fallston) dropped a semifinal match, 6-1, 6-2 to Rock Valley’s Brian Dickinson and Andy Wright.
Freshman Cory Litka (York, Pa./Aberdeen/East Stroudsburg) and sophomore Josh Meier (Belcamp, Md./Home School) claimed the only other tournament win for Harford when they downed Kingsborough’s Uladzimir Ryzkho and Aydar Suleymanov, 6-3, 6-3 on the first day of competition on Monday.
The 2010 Fighting Owls squad finished the season with a 9-3 dual match record and claimed its second straight Region XX Championship by downing Montgomery College-Rockville, 8-1, in the championship match. Rockville finished the National Tournament in a tie for 11th place with Harford, after the Knights’ lone participant, Andrew Ortiz, won his first two matches in the Flight 1 singles main draw.
Harbach Named All-Conference, All-Region For Second Straight Year, Leads Harford Baseball Award-Winners
BEL AIR, Md.—Sophomore Joe Harbach (Abingdon, Md./Edgewood) has been named to the MDJUCO All-Conference and Region XX All-Region First Team for the second straight year to lead Harford’s selections to the annual award squads, the region and conference offices announced recently. Sophomore Woody Wlodarczyk (Bel Air, Md./C. Milton Wright) joins Harbach on the All-Region First Team and has been named to the All-Conference Second Team, while sophomore Jordan Heller (Loch Raven, Md./Loch Raven/Chesapeake earned a spot on the All-Region Second Team.
Harbach, a Division-II NJCAA National Player of the Week selection earlier this season, led the nation in batting average for several weeks, but has since dropped to second among players appearing in at least 75% of their teams’ games. Currently, Harbach has a .524 average with 87 hits in 166 at-bats. He has started all 47 games for the Fighting Owls and also leads the team with 63 runs scored, 18 doubles and 57 RBI and is tied for first with three triples and 10 home runs. Additionally, Harbach is in a tie for fifth in the country with a .585 on-base percentage and is tied for third in the conference with 37 stolen bases.
The sophomore outfielder is not just the leader at the plate, but on the mound as well. Harbach is coming off a career game on the hill, which saw him strike out 15 in a nine-inning, complete-game win to give Harford its first postseason victory in recent history. The southpaw allowed just two runs on five hits during last Saturday’s 4-2 win over CCBC-Dundalk in the Region XX Opening Round. For the season, Harbach also leads Harford with a 3.77 ERA over 45.1 innings and has struck out 52 in his 14 appearances and six starts.
Wlodarczyk currently ranks second on the team with a .418 average, tallying 61 hits in 146 at-bats this season. He is also tied with Harbach for first on the team with three doubles, is second with six home runs and a .505 on-base percentage and is third with 45 RBI in 45 starts this year.
Heller, a transfer from MDJUCO-foe Chesapeake has made an immediate impact as Harford’s closer and everyday left-fielder this season and is currently ranked 11th in the nation and third in the conference with a 1.32 strikeout per inning ratio. For the season, Heller has 41 K’s in 31 innings and has generated a 4.06 ERA, second on the Harford team. His four saves rank in a tie for 22nd in the country and second in the conference, while he is holding his opponents to a team-leading .192 average. At the plate, Heller is just as impressive and currently holds the fourth-best average on the team (.366) with 45 hits in 123 at-bats, while his 13 doubles rank third among the Fighting Owls.
Harbach, Wlodarczyk, Heller and rest of the Fighting Owls continue competition this season on Friday when they take on top-seeded Frederick in the Region XX Tournament at 1:00 p.m. at CCBC-Catonsville.
Cooley, Ripken Represent Harford Softball on All-Conference and All-Region Teams
BEL AIR, Md.—Harford softball freshman Mariah Ripken (Havre de Grace, Md./Havre de Grace/Kutztown) and sophomore Sarah Cooley (Clermont, Fla./Bel Air) have been named to the MDJUCO All-Conference Second-Team and Region XX All-Region Second-Team, the conference and region offices announced recently.
Ripken finished the season with the highest batting average (.417) among Fighting Owls players that appeared in at least 75% of Harford’s total games. The freshman was only one of two Harford players to play and start all 26 games, also leading the team with 35 hits, 11 doubles, five triples and 25 RBI and ranking second with four home runs. On the mound, Ripken was second on the team with a 3.96 ERA over 53 innings, which saw her strike out 40 batters. She was also the only pitcher with a winning record on the team, posting a 4-3 mark in nine appearances and seven starts.
Cooley finished second among player that played in at least 75% of games with a .410 average on 34 hits, six doubles and 21 RBI, with her hits and RBI totals also ranking second on the team, while her doubles total was tied for second. She saw the most work on the mound with 68.1 innings pitched and generated a 4.20 ERA, while striking out a team-leading 60 batters in 12 appearances and 11 starts.
Ripken, Cooley and the Fighting Owls wrapped up the 2010 season at the end of April when the Owls were blanked by eventual Region XX champion Cecil, 8-0, in the Region XX Opening Round.
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