Prep Notebook: Is Herndon’s Jones Northern Virginia’s Most-Underrated Player?

April 17 - Mike Jones might be Northern Virginia’s best player you’ve never heard of.

Now you have.

Herndon’s senior third baseman hasn’t spent his summers trekking all over the east coast to gain exposure on the showcase circuit, opting instead to play in the local Babe Ruth League. In the fall, he was busy playing for the Hornets’ football team, earning first-team All-Liberty District honors as a wide receiver and kick returner and a second-team All-Region 6D nod as a returner.

After hitting four home runs en route to first-team all-district honors last spring, the 6-foot-1, 180-pound Jones has picked up where he left off, slugging his way onto college coaches’ radars this spring. He entered today hitting .429 with five homers, 14 RBI and 19 runs for Herndon, who are 7-4 overall and 2-0 over its spring break trip to Orlando, FL. Of his 18 hits, 11 have gone for extra bases.

“Mike Jones is a great kid and has a bright future in front of him,” Hornets second-year coach Chris Metz wrote. “He is also a very coachable kid. Very quiet and goes about his business on the field.”

While the reserved Jones might prefer a low profile, his athleticism and muscular build strike comparisons to the program’s highest-profile alum, Brandon Guyer, another former two-sport star at the school who is now in his eighth season in the Major Leagues. Jones is able to dunk a basketball while standing flat-footed under the basket, and a quick search of football highlights such as this one demonstrate his agility and speed.

Now, finally on the recruiting radar halfway through is final prep season, Jones hopes to help the Hornets make a push for their first regional appearance since 2015 while continuing to improve his stock with college coaches.

Herndon resumes play in Orlando tomorrow against Brooks College Prep/Chicago International Charter-Hawkins.

Tigers’ Foursome Has Defending Region 3B Champs Rolling

No. 9 Brentsville District had winning streaks of eight and six en route to a Region 3B championship and a berth in the Class 3 state semifinals. The Tigers have carried that momentum into the 2019 season, winning their first nine games before yesterday’s 7-6 loss to No. 8 Stafford in the Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament semifinals.

Brentsville (10-1) rebounded to beat Rock Ridge, 5-2, in today’s third-place game and has now won 24 of 27 games since dropping four of five during a stretch in late March and early April last year. A big reason for its success this spring has been the pitching combination of senior Jake DeLisi and junior Vince DiMauro and a lineup paced by versatile senior infielder Billy Hoad and senior center fielder Luke Binsted, who transferred after earning second-team All-Northwestern District honors at Manassas Park in 2018.

DeLisi is 4-0 with a save and a 0.67 ERA with 32 strikeouts to five walks in 21 innings, while DiMauro is 4-0 with a save and a 1.85 ERA with 53 strikeouts and eight walks. The two right-handers combined for a no-hitter in a 4-0 win over Fauquier on Mar. 25, and also combined to hold Skyline hitless in a season-opening 11-0 win that was shortened to five innings due to the 10-run mercy rule.

Meanwhile, Hoad is hitting .472 with four extra-base hits and 18 runs out of the leadoff spot and Binsted is hitting .436 with five extra-base hits and 12 RBI.

The Tigers resume play on Tuesday at Kettle Run.

Teams Navigate Early-Season Injury Bug

Injuries have plagued area teams that entered the season with high hopes.

Riverside, a preseason Northern Virginia Top 10 team after going 19-3 last year, will be without one of its top pitchers, senior David Setien, for the entire season with a labrum injury to his shoulder. After dropping their first five games, the Rams (3-6) have won three of four entering today’s game against Bishop England (S.C.) at the Hanahan Invitational Tournament in Charleston, S.C., and hope to get senior shortstop Carson Swank, a Yale recruit and member of the 2018 NOVA Nine Team, back at the end of the month as he recovers from a broken hand.

Fauquier, coming off a Class 4 state tournament berth, lost 6-foot-6, 225-pound right-hander Lane Pearson to Tommy John Surgery prior to the season. Pearson will pitch next year at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. The same fate occurred for Bishop O’Connell’s Nick Liverpool, who will also miss his final prep season after having TJ before going down to play at Belmont Abbey College in North Carolina next year.

Two Division I-bound players have also suffered minor injuries - O’Connell junior shortstop and right-hander Eddie Eisert (N.C. State) missed some time due to a hip injury and South Lakes junior shortstop Ryan Dooley (Virginia Military Institute) is out for a few games with a dislocated finger - and Potomac sophomore third baseman Dylan Heil, one of the Panthers’ top hitters this season, is out for at least two more weeks following hernia-related surgery last Friday.

Photo of Herndon’s Mike Jones by Patrick Mills

Gjormand Pitches Father Past Norwood to 5th All-Time in NOVA Coaching Wins

April 17 - Mark ‘Pudge’ Gjormand passed the late Del Norwood yesterday for fifth all-time in Northern Virginia coaching victories. And it was his son, Josh, who pitched him to the milestone win.

Madison’s senior left-hander tossed a complete game in a 4-2 win over Ocean Lakes at the Hanahan Invitational Tournament as the No. 7 Warhawks improved to 9-2 and advanced to the Steadman Division semifinals. Gjormand scattered seven hits, struck out five and retired the side in order over the final three frames after the Dolphins (6-2) cut the lead to 4-2 in the fourth. The win was the University of Lynchburg recruit’s fourth this spring.

Chris Polymeropoulos had a two-run second-inning single and Colin Tuft and Luke Erdmann drove in runs the following inning on an RBI single and a sacrifice fly, respectively. Madison will play at Ashley Ridge (S.C.) in the semifinal game at 7:30 p.m. tonight.

“Reflecting on it, it’s really special. That’s something that I’ll never forget,” Gjormand said of his son being the game’s winning pitcher. “Josh just battled against a very good Ocean Lakes team. It was a playoff atmosphere.”

The win was Gjormand’s 421st as Madison’s coach, passing Norwood, the legendary Arlington figure who led Washington-Lee to 420 wins from 1960-87. “[Norwood] was just a great guy, and it means a lot because I know how well-respected he was, not just as a baseball coach but as a man,” Gjormand said.

“I met Coach Norwood when I was coaching at Marshall and Dean Sissler would bring him in and he would throw [batting practice], including right before the region championship game in ‘92 when we were getting ready to play West Springfield. It was amazing how well he could still throw, he was in his 60s and still played in a men’s league.”

Gjormand, who took over the Warhawks program in 1996, now trails Loudoun Valley’s Wayne Todd (502), Potomac’s Mike Covington (452) and two former area coaches - longtime Oakton skipper Tom Hall (437) and Ron Tugwell (431), who guided West Springfield to two state championships.

Despite being in his 24th season as Madison’s skipper and in his 33rd year overall as a high school coach, Gjormand hasn’t shown any signs of slowing down.

“I feel young, excited every day and feel that I’m making a difference with kids,” the coach said. “Tug, that’s the guy I always wanted to be around, to work around, and to me, he’s the king. And Tom Hall is a legend. I’ve taken so much from those guys, and I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for being around them.

“When you’re getting into that kind of air, it’s very humbling.”

Photos of Josh Gjormand and of Mark ‘Pudge’ Gjormand by Albert Jacquez

McLean to Face No. 8 Stafford in “Let’s Play Two” Final; Centreville Remains Perfect at D.C. Classic


April 17 - McLean brothers Griffin and Drew Stieg each had three hits and combined for three RBI in an 8-2 win over Rock Ridge, and No. 8 Stafford overcame a 6-0 deficit in a 7-6 win over No. 9 Brentsville District as the two teams advanced to today’s championship game at the Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament.

Both the Highlanders (8-5) and the Indians (12-1) are 3-0 at the tournament entering today’s final, which will take place at 4 p.m. at C.D. Hylton. It’s the third championship game appearance in four years for McLean, which won in 2016 and lost to Potomac last year. The Phoenix (4-7) and the Tigers (9-1) will play in the third place game at Woodbridge at 1:30 p.m.

Stafford come from behind to win its past two games, beating No. 4 Potomac, 5-3, on Mike Tolson’s three-run walk-off homer on Monday and using a five-run bottom of the fourth as a catalyst in its comeback win yesterday over previously unbeaten Brentsville District. Jimmy Baker had a two-run double while Grant Fuller and Elijah Lambros had RBI singles during the big inning, then Kazuya Jordan and Tucker Sullivan drew bases-loaded walks on Tigers reliever Mickey Haynes for the tying and go-ahead runs in the fifth.

Sullivan tossed the final two innings to earn the victory. The sophomore right-hander has pitched two innings in all three games at the tournament, earning the save in a 5-2 win over Kettle Run on Saturday, and the win the past two days.

In consolation game action at the Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament, Joe Vogatsky struck out seven and scattered two hits in a complete-game effort in Kettle Run’s 2-1 win over Marshall, Potomac’s Matt Drumgold stole home for the go-ahead run in the top of the seventh as Potomac edged Colonial Forge, 3-2, and Harrison Whitt hit a walk-off single in the bottom of the 10th to give Fauquier a 1-0 win over T.C. Williams.

Notable in today’s action is two brothers squaring off when Colgan coach Mike Colangelo faces his younger brother, Dave, the coach at Colonial Forge, at Woodbridge at 11 a.m.

At the D.C. Baseball Classic, Centreville (10-3) improved to 4-0 at the tournament behind right-hander Eric Bohenek, who tossed a complete game and limited Narbonne (CA) to three hits in a 5-1 win. The Wildcats have allowed just three runs entering today’s game against Stonewall Jackson (3-9). Offensively, Centreville has been led at the tournament by third baseman Gavin Collins, who is 6-for-13 with five runs and four RBI, and outfielder Thomas Trinca, who has remained hot after winning Saturday’s Home Run Derby while going 5-for-9 with two walks, three RBI and four steals.

W.T. Woodson both of its games yesterday at the D.C. Baseball Classic, blitzing Mount Vernon, 18-0, before upsetting No. 5 Westfield, 2-1, in a pitchers’ duel between the Cavaliers’ Zach Lieberman and the Bulldogs’ Danny Leo. Both pitchers went the distance and allowed three hits, with what amounted to the winning run coming in on a squeeze bunt by Richie Dudley to give Woodson a 2-0 lead in the top of the sixth.

The tournament will not hold an official championship game, as teams agreed before the event that if the top two teams were from the same district, they would instead play teams from outside their district on the final day. Despite yesterday’s loss, Westfield would have been Centreville’s opponent in the final based on a better runs-allowed differential than No. 3 Lake Braddock (12-2), which is 3-1 at the tournament after yesterday’s 6-1 win over Narbonne (CA).

Below are yesterday’s results for the two tournaments.

Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament:
Kettle Run 2, Marshall 1
Colgan 6, Mountain View 0
Potomac 3, Colonial Forge 2
Stafford 7, Brentsville District 6
McLean 8, Rock Ridge 2
Edison 8, C.D. Hylton 3
Fauquier 1, T.C. Williams 0
Osbourn Park 3, Woodbridge 0

D.C. Baseball Classic:
Chantilly 19, Washington-Lee 2
W.T. Woodson 18,  Mount Vernon 0
W.T. Woodson 2, Westfield 1
Lake Braddock 6,  Narbonne, CA 1
Centreville  5, Narbonne, CA 1
Dominion 9, South County 1
George Mason 8, Grace Academy, MD  4
Gonzaga, D.C. 8, Grace Academy, MD 6

Below are today’s schedules for the two tournaments.

Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament:
Colgan (8-5) vs. Colonial Forge (6-5) at Woodbridge, 11 a.m.
Fauquier (3-7) vs. Edison (4-8) at C.D. Hylton, 11 a.m.
Brentsville District (9-1) vs. Rock Ridge (4-7) at Woodbridge, 1:30 p.m.**
T.C. Williams (3-10) at C.D. Hylton (6-7), 1:30 p.m.
Kettle Run (5-6) at Osbourn Park (8-4), 2 p.m.
Mountain View (3-6) at Potomac (11-2), 2 p.m.
Marshall (7-5) at Woodbridge (3-7), 4 p.m.
Stafford (12-1) vs. McLean (8-5) at C.D. Hylton, 4 p.m.*
* Championship Game   ** Third Place Game

D.C. Baseball Classic:
Lake Braddock (12-2) vs. Washington-Lee (5-9) at Westfield, 11 a.m.
Stonewall Jackson (3-9) at Centreville (10-3), 11 a.m.
South County (6-7) at Chantilly (6-7), 12 p.m.
Gonzaga, D.C. (13-4) at Westfield (11-2), 2:30 p.m.
W.T. Woodson (3-10) vs. Narbonne, CA (10-17) at Centreville, 2:30 p.m.
Archbishop Spalding, MD (12-6) at Falls Church (3-6), 4:30 p.m.

Photo of McLean’s Drew Stieg by Joey Kamide and of Stafford’s Jimmy Baker by Michael Greene

Cuadros’ Big Night Helps Bruins Bounce Back in D.C. Baseball Classic

April 16 - Ryan Cuadros was 3-for-4 with a home run and four RBI last night to lead No. 3 Lake Braddock to an 11-5 win over visiting Gonzaga (D.C.), bouncing back after dropping a 2-0 decision earlier in the day to Centreville in the D.C. Baseball Classic.

After the Bruins erased an early 2-0 deficit to the Purple Eagles with a seven-run second inning, Cuadros put the game away with his three-run homer to left field. Jay Cassady, right fielder Lyle Miller-Green and first baseman Andrew Schaeb had RBI singles and designated hitter Mike Weidinger capped the big frame with a three-run double during the second-inning rally.

“Coach set an approach for us to stay back and keep our hands inside the ball,” Cuadros said of his team’s response to the shutout loss earlier in the day. “It worked out for me and for us, and got us going.”

Added Lake Braddock coach John Thomas: “I definitely liked the response. I do think we have a roster full of tough kids.”

Cassady settled down after allowing solo homers to freshman third baseman Nicholas Morabito and first baseman Christian Ficca in the first and two more runs in the third. The junior left-hander retired 10 of 11 batters before Thomas removed him after right fielder Colin McKenzie led off the top of the seventh with a single. He was charged for a fifth run when McKenzie came around to score on reliever Will Hellier.

“In a normal circumstance we probably wouldn’t have sent him back out for the sixth [inning],” Thomas said of Cassady, who was then given the opportunity to try and complete the game after a 1-2-3 frame in the sixth. “Part of that was that our staff is pretty taxed, I think this is the sixth game in seven or eight days … I thought there would be some value to let him try and finish that game.”

Cassady finished with 99 pitches, striking out four and walking two while allowing five hits.

Shortstop Bobby Leitzel added two hits for the Bruins, while left fielder Lucas Leclair paced Gonzaga with two hits. Noah Potholm, the Purple Eagles’ freshman right-hander, took the loss after allowing seven runs (one earned) in two innings.

Lake Braddock’s offensive output was in stark contrast to their 2-0 loss earlier in the day to the Wildcats, when they managed just two hits and were unable to score despite loading the bases twice on Centreville starter Hunter Bell and reliever Eric Bohenek. Bell earned the win after striking out nine in 6.2 innings.

Notable: In today’s 6-1 win over Narbonne (CA), Miller-Green went 2-for-3 with a double and three RBI and he has six RBI over four games in the tournament out of the leadoff spot … Leitzel had a hit in today’s game to extend his hitting streak to 11 games … The loss was the second straight for Gonzaga, which had won 12 of its first 14 games under first-year coach Chad Carroll, a former standout at Oakton.

Quotable: “The bolt was great to see because it was middle-in, and he just reacted. He wasn’t around that. So, yeah, he’s had a rough couple of weeks, but he’s a 15-year-old sophomore and I’m super proud of how he’s handled it. This is probably the first time in his life he’s really struggled much. We had him out of the lineup for a game or two to kind of let him reset, and he’s really responded well to that. For us to be the team we want to be, we need him and it’s just good to see him mature over the past couple of weeks.” - Lake Braddock coach John Thomas, on Ryan Cuadros breaking out of a recent slump

Media: Pregame interviews with Gonzaga coach Chad Carroll and Lake Braddock coach John Thomas and postgame Player of the Game interview with Lake Braddock’s Ryan Cuadros.

Next: Both teams conclude play in the tournament tomorrow, when Lake Braddock (12-2) meets Washington-Lee at 11:30 a.m. at Westfield and Gonzaga (13-4) plays at Westfield at 2:30 p.m.

Photo of Ryan Cuadros courtesy of Lake Braddock Baseball

Seahawks’ Dooley Suffers Dislocated Finger, Timetable for Return Unknown

April 16 - South Lakes junior shortstop Ryan Dooley, a Virginia Military Institute recruit, suffered a dislocated finger while sliding headfirst into second base in the Seahawks’ opening game yesterday at the Hanahan Invitational Tournament in Charleston, S.C.

Dooley, who is hitting .444 and has drawn 11 walks this season, suffered the injury while stealing second after he led off the bottom of the sixth inning with a single in a 7-1 loss to Fort Dorchester (S.C.). South Lakes initially feared his finger was broken and that their two-time all-district infielder could be lost for up to two months, but with a lesser diagnosis could potentially get him back in a limited role later this week.

Dooley did not play in today’s 10-5 win over A.C. Reynolds (N.C.). Jack Thompson struck out eight in a complete-game outing, Clayton Long hit a grand slam and freshman Jamie Quinn-Irons added a solo homer as the Seahawks (6-5) snapped a five-game losing streak.

In Sunday’s H.I.T. Home Run Derby, Dooley clubbed five homers but did not advance past the first round. Berkeley (S.C.) junior Jeffrey Zeigler won the event, beating Hanahan’s Jonathan Barham in the finals.

Photo of Ryan Dooley by Cyril Samonte

Northern Virginia Top 10: Brentsville, Yorktown Enter Poll, Battlefield Near-Unanimous No. 1

April 16 - Battlefield was a near-unanimous No. 1 while retaining the top spot for a sixth consecutive week in the latest Northern Virginia Top 10 Poll, sponsored by Prime Time Baseball in Alexandria.

The Bobcats, who were 9-0 entering the week, received 40 of 41 first-place votes and 407 points from the magazine’s selection committee as they traveled to begin play this week at the Mingo Bay Classic in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

No. 2 Patriot (8-0) moved up one spot, getting the final first-place vote and 340 points prior to beginning play this week at the Hanahan Invitational Tournament in Charleston, S.C. The Pioneers swapped places with No. 3 Lake Braddock (10-1), which got 317 points.

Also swapping positions were No. 4 Potomac (10-1) and No. 5 Westfield (9-1), who received 259 and 256 points, respectively. Both teams are playing locally this week, the Panthers at the Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament in Prince William County, and the Bulldogs in the D.C. Baseball Classic in Fairfax and Loudoun counties.

The following three spots remained the same, with No. 6 Episcopal (12-1) getting 161 points, No. 7 Madison (7-2) receiving 153 points, and No. 8 Stafford (10-1) garnering 140 points. Madison is in Charleston this week playing in the H.I.T., while Stafford is playing locally in the Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament.

Joining the rankings for the first time this season are No. 9 Brentsville District (8-0), which received 94 points and is also participating in the Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament, and No. 10 Yorktown (9-1), which got 32 points and is playing in the Mingo Bay Classic. Bishop O’Connell (10-4) and Loudoun Valley (6-4), last week’s No. 9- and No. 10-ranked teams, dropped out of the poll.  

Also receiving votes this week were the following teams: West Potomac (20), Briar Woods (19), Highland School (19), Bishop O'Connell (14), Centreville (7), West Springfield (7), Heritage (5), Colonial Forge (2), Robinson (2) and Loudoun Valley (1).

Note: Ballots were submitted prior to yesterday’s games. Won-loss records are through Sunday.

Sponsor: The magazine’s Northern Virginia Top 10 Poll is sponsored by the Prime Time Baseball Academy. For more information on the academy, visit its website at

Photo of Stafford coach Tommy Harrison by Michael Greene

Centreville’s Pitching, Tolson’s Walk-off Keep Teams Unbeaten at Area Spring Break Tourneys

April 16 - Hunter Bell and Casey Bach pitched Centreville to two shutouts at the D.C. Baseball Classic and Mike Tolson hit a walk-off home run to give Stafford a win in a Northern Virginia Top 10 match-up at the Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Invitational to lead yesterday’s area spring break tournament action.

Bell, a Virginia Commonwealth recruit, struck out nine and pitched into the seventh inning and Eric Bohenek came on to strike out Connor O’Grady-Walsh with the bases loaded to earn the save in the Wildcats’ 2-0 win over No. 2 Lake Braddock in an afternoon contest. Bach, the youngest of four brothers who have pitched at Centreville, then struck out six while scattering two hits over five scoreless innings before a 13-0 win over Washington-Lee was called due to the 10-run mercy rule.

The Wildcats (9-3) can clinch a spot in tomorrow’s tournament championship game with a win this morning over Narbonne (CA). No. 4 Westfield (11-1) is also undefeated in pool play, and can also clinch a spot in tomorrow’s final with a win over W.T. Woodson. The Bulldogs won twice yesterday, getting 10 strikeouts from Jason Cheifetz in a complete-game outing in an 8-3 win over Stonewall Jackson and three hits and three RBI from Derek Furr in an 11-0 win over Narbonne.

Down in Prince William County, Tolson’s three-run shot slipped over the left field fence to give No. 8 Stafford (11-1) a 5-2 win over No. 5 Potomac (10-2) and a berth in this afternoon’s semifinals at the Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament against Brentsville District (9-0). Tolson’s homer made a winner of Tucker Sullivan, who allowed the Panthers to score a go-ahead run on Julian Cumba’s sacrifice bunt in the top of the sixth, but settled down and posted a three-up, three-down seventh. Tolson had gone five innings, allowing two runs (one earned) on four hits and seven walks. Brody Mack earned a no-decision after working into the sixth and allowing two runs (one earned).

Brentsville, meanwhile, remained unbeaten after getting three hits and two RBI from Billy Hoad and two hits and two RBI from Mickey Haynes in a 7-4 win over Colonial Forge. The Tigers will meet Stafford at 1:30 p.m. at C.D. Hylton while McLean (7-5) and Rock Ridge (4-6) play in the other semifinal at 1:30 p.m. at Woodbridge.

Below are yesterday’s results for the two tournaments.

Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament:
McLean 6, Colgan 4
Rock Ridge 5, Mountain View 3
Brentsville District 7, Colonial Forge 4
Kettle Run 5, Edison 4
Osbourn Park 14, T.C. Williams 0
Woodbridge 6, Fauquier 3
Marshall 10, C.D. Hylton 2
Stafford 5, Potomac 3

D.C. Baseball Classic:
Narbonne (CA) 4, Chantilly 0
South County, 10, Chantilly 3
Westfield 8, Stonewall Jackson 3
Centreville 2, Lake Braddock 0
Dominion 14, W.T. Woodson 10
George Mason 2, Falls Church 0
Centreville 13, Washington-Lee 0
Westfield 11, Narbonne (CA) 0
Archbishop Spalding (MD) 17, Stonewall Jackson 6
Lake Braddock 11, Gonzaga (D.C.) 5
South County 4, Washington-Lee 2

Below are today’s schedules for the two tournaments.

Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament:
Colgan (7-5) vs. Mountain View (3-5) at Woodbridge, 11 a.m.
Marshall (7-4) vs. Kettle Run (4-6) at C.D. Hylton, 11 a.m.
McLean (7-5) vs. Rock Ridge (4-6) at Woodbridge, 1:30 p.m.*
Brentsville District (9-0) vs. Stafford (11-1) at C.D. Hylton, 1:30 p.m.*
Colonial Forge (6-4) at Potomac (10-2), 2 p.m.
T.C. Williams (3-9) vs. Fauquier (2-7) at Woodbridge, 4 p.m.
Edison (3-8) at C.D. Hylton (6-6), 4 p.m.
Woodbridge (3-6) at Osbourn Park (7-4), 6:30 p.m.
* Semifinal Game

D.C. Baseball Classic:
Washington-Lee (5-8) at Chantilly (5-7), 11 a.m.
Narbonne, CA (10-15) at Centreville (9-3), 11 a.m.
South County (6-6) at Dominion (5-5), 12 p.m.
W.T. Woodson vs. Mount Vernon at Westfield, 12 p.m.
Lake Braddock (11-2) vs. Narbonne, CA (10-15) at Centreville, 2 p.m.
Grace Academy MD vs. George Mason at Dominion, 3 p.m.
W.T. Woodson (1-10) at Westfield (11-1), 3 p.m.
Gonzaga, D.C. (12-4) vs. Grace Academy, MD (7-4) at Dominion, 5:45 p.m.

Photos of Stafford’s Gunther Braendel and Centreville’s Hunter Bell by Michael Greene

Northern Virginia Teams Flock South for Hanahan, Mingo Bay Tournaments

April 15 - Twenty area teams will take the field in South Carolina vying for championships at two tournaments over spring break.

Seven local teams will compete in the 50th annual Hahahan Invitational Tournament held in the greater Charleston area, including No. 3 Patriot (8-0) and No.7 Madison (7-2). The H.I.T. has a 38-team field, the second-largest in the tournament’s history, with teams coming from New York, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia.

Each team is slotted in two divisions - the Hatfield and the Steadman, named for former Hanahan coaches who helped grow the event’s popularity in its earlier years - and will play three pool play games. Pool winners advance to the semifinals on Wednesday, with the two division championship games held on Thursday. Teams that don’t qualify for bracket play receive consolation games.

The Pioneers and Warhawks, who have claimed multiple titles at the tournament and won as recently as 2017, are joined at the H.I.T. by Robinson (7-2), Riverside (2-5), Oakton (3-6), South Lakes (5-4) and West Springfield (6-3).

“It has certainly become one of the big events around this area, especially for high school baseball,” Hanahan coach Brian Mitchell, the tournament’s director, told the Charleston Post and Courier. “It takes a lot of hard work to pull off such a big event and we are so thankful for the cooperation we get from all of our local schools who host as sites.”

At the Mingo Bay Classic held in the greater Myrtle Beach area, 12 area clubs will compete for championships in two divisions. A total of 96 teams from five states are participating in the annual tournament, with each team receiving three pool play games while jockeying for seeding into bracket play. Four teams in each of the two divisions will qualify for the championship bracket and earn a spot in the semifinals, with the finals on Friday.

The remainder of the teams seeded into consolation semifinal contests on Thursday and Friday.

One of the tournament favorites is No. 1 Battlefield (9-0). The Bobcats, who won the Division I title last year, are joined in that division this year by Champe (3-3), Fairfax (2-8), Forest Park (4-5), Heritage (6-2), Jefferson (7-4), Tuscarora (2-5), West Potomac (7-2) and Yorktown (9-1).

In the Division II bracket, Gar-Field (2-8), a finalist in that division a year ago, is joined by North Stafford (6-4), Osbourn (4-4) and Stone Bridge (3-3).

Photo of Battlefield’s J.T. McGuire by Fred Ingham and of Madison’s Josh Gjormand by Albert Jacquez

Siesky’s Walk-Off, Farmakides’ Big Day, Majors’ 1st Win Highlight Area Tourneys

April 14 - Dylan Siesky hit a two-run walk-off homer to give Chantilly a 9-7 win over W.T. Woodson, Anthony Farmakides was 4-for-4 with a homer and four RBI to lead McLean past Osbourn Park, and Mount Vernon held off a late Stonewall Jackson rally for its first win of the season as the area’s two spring break tournaments opened play yesterday.

At the Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament, Farmakides’ big day set the Highlanders up for a showdown with Colgan - a 14-4 winner over T.C. Williams - for the right to advance to bracket play on Tuesday. Also tomorrow: Rock Ridge and Mountain View will play to determine the winner of the Woodbridge pool; Colonial Forge puts its five-game winning streak on the line against unbeaten Brentsville District for the right to advance from the C.D. Hylton pool; and No. 8 Stafford travels to No. 5 Potomac to determine the fourth pool winner.

The Rock Ridge-Mountain View winner will play the McLean-Colgan winner in Tuesday’s semifinals, with the Colonial Forge-Brentsville and Stafford-Potomac winners meeting in the other semifinal. The tournament’s championship game is scheduled for Wednesday at a site and time to be announced. Teams that fail to qualify for bracket play will receive consolation games on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The D.C. Baseball Classic also continues tomorrow, and No. 2 Lake Braddock will have its hands full as the Bruins host Centreville and a Gonzaga (D.C.) team that has won 12 of 15 games this spring. Each of the 15 teams in the tournament are playing four pool play games, and eight - Chantilly, Centreville, Lake Braddock, Narbonne (CA), South County, Washington-Lee, No. 4 Westfield and W.T. Woodson - have requested a fifth game and are vying to play in Wednesday’s championship game at 2:30 p.m. at Westfield.

Below are Saturday’s results for the two tournaments.

Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament:
No. 8 Stafford 5, Kettle Run 2
McLean 9, Osbourn Park 6
Rock Ridge 7, Fauquier 6
Brentsville District 9, Marshall 6
Colgan 14, T.C. Williams 4
Mountain View 7, Woodbridge 3
Colonial Forge 9, C.D. Hylton 2
No. 5 Potomac 12, Edison 2

D.C. Baseball Classic:
No. 2 Lake Braddock 12, Grade Academy, MD 5
Centreville 4, South County 2
Archbishop Spalding 11, George Mason 1
Gonzaga, D.C. 9, Dominion 6
Chantilly 9, W.T. Woodson 7
Falls Church 10, Washington-Lee 8
No. 4 Westfield 9, Grace Academy, MD 0
Mount Vernon 11, Stonewall Jackson 10

Below are Monday’s schedules for the two tournaments.

Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament:
Colgan (7-4) vs. McLean (6-5) at Osbourn Park, 12 p.m.
Rock Ridge (3-6) vs. Mountain View (3-4) at Woodbridge, 12 p.m.
Colonial Forge (6-3) vs. Brentsville District (8-0) at C.D. Hylton, 12 p.m.
Kettle Run (3-6) vs. Edison (3-7) at Potomac, 12 p.m.
T.C. Williams (3-8) at Osbourn Park (6-4), 2:30 p.m.
Fauquier (2-6) at Woodbridge (2-6), 2:30 p.m.
Marshall (6-4) at C.D. Hylton (6-5), 2:30 p.m.
No. 8 Stafford (10-1) at No. 5 Potomac (10-1), 2:30 p.m.

D.C. Baseball Classic:
Narbonne, CA (9-14) vs. Chantilly (5-5) at South County MS, 10 a.m.
South County (4-6) vs. Chantilly (5-5) at South County MS, 12:20 p.m.
No. 2 Lake Braddock (10-1) vs. Centreville (7-3) at South County MS, 2:40 p.m.
Stonewall Jackson (3-9) at No. 4 Westfield (9-1), 2:30 p.m.
W.T. Woodson (1-9) at Dominion (4-5), 3:30 p.m.
George Mason (4-7) at Falls Church (4-6), 4 p.m.
Washington-Lee (5-6) vs. Centreville (7-3) at South County MS, 5 p.m.
Narbonne, CA (9-14) at No. 4 Westfield (9-1), 5:15 p.m.
Stonewall Jackson (3-9) vs. Archbishop Spalding, MD (10-6) at Dominion, 6:30 p.m.
Gonzaga, D.C. (12-2) at Lake Braddock (10-1), 7 p.m.
Washington-Lee (5-6) vs. South County (4-5) at South County MS, 7:20 p.m.

Photo of Potomac’s Ben Thomas by Mike Greene and of Westfield’s Jason Cheifetz by Fred Ingham

Trinca Goes Deep 18 Times, Wins D.C. Baseball Classic Home Run Derby

April 14 - Centreville’s Thomas Trinca clubbed 18 home runs over three rounds and out-slugged Chantilly’s Dylan Siesky in the championship round to win last night’s D.C. Baseball Classic Home Run Derby at Westfield.

The derby featured a field of 12 players from teams participating in the tournament, and produced a total of 44 homers. Trinca seemed to grow stronger as the event went on, increasing his total in each round and at one point hitting four straight in the final round. The Wildcats’ junior outfielder hit 10 out over the first two rounds, then clubbed eight in the championship round to claim the derby title.

“[I was] just taking the exact same swing every time, looking for the same pitch and put everything I have into it,” he said afterwards.

Trinca beat Siesky, his Concorde District rival who entered the event as one of Northern Virginia’s hottest hitters and with five homers this season after hitting two in yesterday’s 9-7 win over W.T. Woodson, including a two-run walk-off shot in the bottom of the seventh inning. Using an inside-out approach, each of Trinca’s 18 homers went to center or right field, a handful clearing the large scoreboard in right-center field. He lined several others off the tall fence in center field that features banners with the numbers of former Westfield sluggers such as Justin Bour, who participated in the Major League Baseball Home Run Derby two years ago in Miami.

Trinca, a two-time all-region selection, credits his work during the offseason with his hitting instructor, Chad Carroll, and time spent over the past two years with Centreville head coach Scott Rowland and hitting coach Mick Hanson for refining his powerful swing.

“I take a little bit from each coach … my approach, bat angle and just staying behind the ball,” he said. “The past few months of practice, we’ve been working solely on working opposite field. And with my hitting coach, Chad, this offseason we worked in the cage a whole bunch keeping everything nice and level to the opposite field.

“And tonight I just put on a little show.”

Siesky, meanwhile, tied with three others - Dominion’s Cortland Lawson, South County’s Tyler Gauthier and Gonzaga’s Nicholas Morabito - with two homers in the opening round. Those four hitters advanced along with Trinca and Westfield’s Joe Clancy, who hit six in his opening round at his home field.

In the second round, Siesky caught fire. The senior infielder and right-handed pitcher, who will play next year at Lafayette College, put pressure on the six semifinalists by leading off the round with eight homers. At one point, he hit five straight, and even balls that did not leave the ballpark seemed to scream off his barrel. Trinca later followed with his six homers to clinch the second spot in the championship round as Clancy cooled off with a round of two and the other three semifinalists were shut out.

Other highlights from the derby included Morabito, the lone freshman participant, advancing with his father, former Bishop O’Connell and James Madison University standout Brian Morabito, serving as his pitcher. Stonewall Jackson’s Cecil Bruce received one of the larger cheers from the crowd when he shed his jersey for his final swing in the opening round.

Other players participating were Falls Church’s Cameron Karicher, W.T. Woodson’s Jacob Perdue, George Mason’s Aiden Clark, Washington-Lee’s Trey Haley and Grace (MD) Academy’s Riley Jackson. Three teams entered in the tournament - Lake Braddock, Narbonne (CA) and Archbishop Spalding (MD) - did not enter a contestant.

Photo of Centreville’s Thomas Trinca, left, and coach Scott Rowland, right, by Joey Kamide

Area Spring Break Tournaments Begin Play Today

April 13 - Two local tournaments begin today as most Virginia public schools start their spring breaks, and 27 area teams - including four from the Northern Virginia Top 10 Poll - will take the field in the events.

The 16-team field at the Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament is broken into four pools, with teams playing games today and Monday and pool winners advancing to bracket play on Tuesday and Wednesday. Teams that don’t advance will play consolation games those two days.

The tournament, established in 1996, was given its current name when Jason Ritenour took over as the coach at C.D. Hylton. He along with David Przybocki now oversee the annual event.

No. 5 Potomac (9-1), the defending champion, and No. 8 Stafford (9-1) are two of the favorites, as is unbeaten Brentsville District (7-0). Colgan (6-4) has posted three straight shutouts, including a no-hitter tossed by junior Ryley Johnson in Thursday’s 5-0 win over Woodbridge. Osbourn Park (6-3) won six of seven to begin the season but was cooled off in losses to No. 1 Battlefield and No. 3 Patriot earlier this week.

The tournament’s four pools are as follows: Colgan, McLean, T.C. Williams and host Osbourn Park; Fauquier, Mountain View, Rock Ridge and host Woodbridge; Edison, Kettle Run, Stafford and host Potomac; and Brentsville District, Colonial Forge, Marshall and C.D. Hylton.

Westfield coach Rob Hahne has established the new D.C. Baseball Classic, a 15-team tournament which is also scheduled to begin today and will include 11 local teams in addition to Washington, D.C.’s Gonzaga, Maryland’s Grace Academy and Archbishop Spalding, and California’s Narbonne. The tournament will be held at several area fields and will also include a Home Run Derby, which is being held tonight at Westfield.

No. 2 Lake Braddock (9-1) and Hahne’s No. 4 Bulldogs (8-1) are the tournament favorites. Gonzaga (11-2) and Grace Academy (7-2) would also be among the favorites, but they are among the seven teams who are just playing four pool play games and not competing for the tournament title.

Below are today’s schedules for the two tournaments.

Eddie Hope “Let’s Play Two” Tournament:
McLean (5-5) at Osbourn Park (6-3), 1 p.m.
Fauquier (2-5) vs. Rock Ridge 2-6) at Woodbridge, 2 p.m.
No. 8 Stafford (9-1) vs. Kettle Run (3-5) at Potomac, 2 p.m.
Marshall (6-3) vs. Brentsville District (7-0) at C.D. Hylton, 2 pm.
Colgan (6-4) vs. T.C. Williams (3-7) at Osbourn Park, 4:30 p.m.
Mountain View (2-4) at Woodbridge (2-5), 4:30 p.m.
Edison (3-6) at No. 5 Potomac (9-1), 4:30 p.m.
Colonial Forge (5-3) at C.D. Hylton (6-4), 5 p.m.

D.C. Baseball Classic:
No. 2 Lake Braddock (9-1) vs. Grace, MD (7-2) at South County MS, 10 a.m.
Centreville (6-3) vs. South County (4-5) at South County MS, 12:30 p.m.
Gonzaga, D.C. (11-2) at Dominion (4-4), 2:30 p.m.
Washington-Lee (5-5) at Falls Church (3-6), 3 p.m.
Archbishop Spalding, MD (9-6) at George Mason (4-6), 3 p.m.
W.T. Woodson (1-8) at Chantilly (4-5), 3 p.m.
Stonewall Jackson (3-8) vs. Mount Vernon (0-11) at South County MS, 3 p.m.
Grace Academy (7-2) at No. 4 Westfield (8-1), 3:30 p.m.
Narbonne, CA (9-14) begins play on Monday

Photos of C.D. Hylton coach Jason Ritenour by Caitlyn Verberg and of Westfield coach Rob Hahne by Fred Ingham

The Rundown: Eikhoff Tosses 3-Hit Shutout as No. 3 Patriot Beats Osbourn Park

April 13 - Riley Eikhoff tossed a three-hit shutout and Brian Wilson scored the go-ahead run and drove in an insurance run in No. 3 Patriot’s 2-0 win over visiting Osbourn Park on Thursday night in Nokesville.

Eikhoff, a University of Virginia recruit, struck out eight against a Yellow Jackets team that has managed just two runs while dropping its last two after scoring 62 runs over a five-game winning streak. The junior right-hander finished with 90 pitches, allowed just one base runner to reach third base, and benefitted from two double plays turned by the Pioneers. He improved to 2-0 with a 2.39 ERA and 20 strikeouts in 14.2 innings, and he’s also hitting .364 with 12 RBI this spring.

Wilson broke a scoreless tie when he came in on a two-out error in the bottom of the fourth. His sixth-inning double scored Eikhoff, who had led off the inning by drawing a walk, to provide the game’s final margin.

With the win, Patriot (8-0 overall, 2-0 Cedar Run District) kept pace with No. 1 Battlefield (9-0, 3-0) atop the league standings. Osbourn Park is 6-3, 2-2.

Here are recaps of Thursday’s other games involving teams from the Northern Virginia Top 10 Poll:

No. 1 Battlefield 11, Osbourn 5 - Peter Benavides was 2-for-3 with a walk, double and three RBI while Zach Agnos and Jamie Garrison each chipped in two hits and Kyle Terrell drove in four runs as the Bobcats improved to 9-0. Cole Reddington went 2-for-3 with two RBI to pace the Eagles.

No. 2 Lake Braddock 12, South County 1 - Lyle Miller-Green struck out eight and surrendered just one hit over 3.2 scoreless innings of relief work for the Bruins, who were playing for a third consecutive night. Ben Sopko had three RBI and Jay Cassady, Mike Weidinger and Ryan Cuadros each drove in two. Tre Williams had the lone hit and RBI for the Stallions.

No. 7 Madison 5, No. 4 Westfield 4 - Ethan Lipp hit a go-ahead sacrifice fly to right field and Ryan Murphy got the final five outs to earn the victory as the Warhawks handed the Bulldogs their first loss of the season. Zach Perkins went 2-for-3 with two RBI while Carson Hoffman, Josh Gjormand and Luke Erdmann chipped in two hits for Madison. Joe Clancy paced Westfield by going 2-for-2 with a walk and an RBI, with Nick Lottchea and Jake Hockett each adding two hits.

No. 5 Potomac 3, Gar-Field 0 - Braden Mack went five innings to earn the win and combined with relievers Jackson Lowery and Josue Cumba for the Panthers’ fifth shutout of the season. Sean Baxter’s fourth-inning sacrifice fly opened the game’s scoring, then Ben Thomas and Adrian Touch drove in insurance runs the following inning. Tyler Perry took the loss after allowing one run on two hits over four innings, and he had one of the Indians’ four hits.

No. 6 Episcopal 3, Landon (MD) 2 - Joseph Notzon hit a go-ahead sacrifice fly in the ninth inning and Tripp Greenwood followed with an RBI single that proved to be the winning hit when Landon scored a run in the bottom of the frame. Jacob Morgan permitted two runs over 8.2 innings to earn the win, and John Moses got the final out to earn the save as the Maroon won their fifth straight and improved to 12-1.

No. 8 Stafford 8, Brooke Point 1 - Jimmy Baker went 2-for-3 with a double and three RBI and the Indians had nine players with base hits en route to their fifth straight win. Robbie Baker went the distance, allowing one unearned run on six hits to earn the victory. Jackson Foreman was 2-for-3 with an RBI to lead the Black-Hawks.

No. 9 Bishop O’Connell 3, Wilson (D.C.) 1 - Eddie Eisert and Jake Berry hit back-to-back RBI singles in the bottom of the sixth inning and Will Pickford came on with the bases loaded in the bottom of the seventh and recorded a strikeout to earn the save. Corey Knauf went 6.2 innings, striking out five and allowing one run on one hit and two walks.

Woodgrove 1, No. 10 Loudoun Valley 0 - Tim Blankenship drove a walk-off single to left field to give the Wolverines their fifth win in six games and hand the Vikings their third loss in as many nights. Nick Lockhart outdueled fellow Virginia Tech recruit Michael Grupe, striking out seven in a three-hit shutout. Grupe took a hard-luck loss, going the distance and allowing seven hits and one unearned run.

Top 10 Today: No. 2 Lake Braddock vs. Grace (MD) Academy at South County MS; Grace (MD) Academy at No. 4 Westfield; Edison at No. 5 Potomac; No. 9 Bishop O’Connell at No. 6 Episcopal; No. 8 Stafford vs. Kettle Run at Potomac

Other Games: Ryley Johnson pitched a no-hitter and struck out 14 as Colgan beat Woodbridge, 5-0, for its third straight shutout. Sharks pitchers have not allowed a run in 19 innings. Garrett Riley was 2-for-3 with two RBI … Joe DeBardi went 4-for-5 with a home run and four RBI and brothers Dylan and Blake Fisher combined for five hits and four RBI to lead Highland School to a 13-8 win over Fredericksburg Christian … Donovan Burke had 12 strikeouts while Wyatt DeProspero and Jack Pomata each had two hits in Loudoun County’s 5-0 win over Heritage … Aidan Henderson went 3-for-4 with three doubles and two RBI, Aiden Tierney had two hits and four RBI and Jake Wortman homered in Colonial Forge’s 14-2 win over Mountain View … Cameron Patton went 2-for-3 with a double and four RBI in as Yorktown improved to 9-1 with a 9-6 win over South Lakes … Michael Hoeymans hit a walk-off single to give Langley a 3-2 win over Herndon … North Stafford rallied for five runs in the top of the seventh in a 5-3 win over Riverbend. Owen Ledford went the distance to earn the victory … Hunter Spicer hit a three-run double, Sam Nichols had two hits and two RBI and earned the save, and Sam Dozier fanned seven in six innings as Washington-Lee beat McLean, 10-7.

Photo of Riley Eikhoff by Fred Ingham