Dillard Pulls Away Late For Win Over Hallandale
The Dillard Panthers rode a pair of big innings in the fourth and fifth to come back for an 18-8 home victory over Hallandale in a District 5A-16 contest played at Dillard High Tuesday evening.
Dillard (2-2) earned its first district victory to end a two-game skid and bring the Panthers record back to .500.
The hosts scored seven runs in the bottom of the fourth inning to come back from a 7-5 deficit, and then put the game away with the mercy rule by tacking on six more runs in the fifth.
The Chargers (0-4, 0-3) certainly battled like a team hungry for its first victory of the season, as the game featured five lead changes in all. But after starting pitcher Valentino Mastrodeminico left after facing only five hitters due to arm pain, ultimately the Chargers bullpen was stretched too far.
Leadoff hitter Cleveland Westbrook led the way for the Panthers by going 3-for-3 with four runs and two RBIs. Westbrook tripled during a three-run second inning, and also drew a pair of walks to reach base in all five trips to the plate.
Jerome Griswell was 2-for-5 with three RBIs and three stolen bases, and Jason Collins went 2-for-4 with a pair of RBIs for Dillard.
Left-hander Daniel York earned the win on the mound, after coming on in relief in the fourth inning and closing out the final two frames. The lanky junior threw 28 of his 50 pitches for strikes and struck out five of the six batters he retired.
After being shut out in its first three games this season, Hallandale shook that monkey off its back in the top of the first inning. Michael Espinal was hit by a pitch to reach base, and then he came in to score on an RBI single from Mastrodeminico to put the Chargers up 1-0.
Hallandale retook the lead in the second inning as Anthony Moron blasted a shot to deep center field for an inside-the-park grand slam in which he just beat the throw and tag at the plate.
Moron was 2-for-3 on the night, while Mastrodeminico went 2-for-4 with two RBIs.
Panthers starter Zucherro Cole worked the first three innings, recording four strikeouts while allowing five earned runs on five hits and three walks.
Chargers freshman reliever Josh Martinez pitched in emergency duty for their starter, throwing 44 of his 71 pitches for strikes. The young right-hander struggled after his pitch count began to rise, but still managed three strikeouts while allowing six hits and three walks.
Dillard earned its first home victory since March 22, 2012 when it also defeated Hallandale 6-4. The teams split last season, as the Chargers won 9-8 on their home field.
Hallandale will host Dillard in this season’s rematch on March 7th.