High School Baseball

Smith pitches Battery Creek baseball team to shutout of Beaufort High School

sfastenau@beaufortgazette.comMarch 13, 2013 

Thomas Smith worked for spots like these.

The Battery Creek High School pitcher spent the offseason running and lifting weights. He still runs a couple of miles on the weekend now that the season started to stay fresh.

And when he reaches the seventh inning -- which he has in both starts this year -- he feels as fresh as when he began. Modest pitch counts have helped.

Smith pitched his second complete game Tuesday in as many starts, helping the Dolphins defeat rival Beaufort High 3-0 at Battery Creek. Smith allowed four hits, walked none and struck out five.

"I feel like I'm in the best shape of my life," Smith said. "I'm just trying to go as deep into games as possible."

The Dolphins, coming off a Monday victory over Bluffton High School and having defeated Whale Branch Early College High School, plays Hilton Head Island High School on Friday with a chance to claim a win from each Beaufort County public school.

It was a goal first-year Dolphins coach Shawn Morrison laid out before the season and one he reiterated Tuesday.

"I don't think it's happened for a while," Morrison said.

Battery Creek beat its rival on the baseball field for the first time since 2009. The Dolphins were held to only three hits, but got on the board early and took advantage of the Eagles' miscues to add insurance.

Dolphins first baseman Craig Capano scored all three Dolphins' runs and had two hits. He played American Legion baseball with Beaufort High starter Brady Cormier this past summer and said he knew what to expect from the Eagles' sophomore.

Capano hit two fastballs for singles and was hit by a pitch his last time up. He scored on a bases-loaded walk, an error and a squeeze bunt.

"I knew he had a good curveball, so I just looked fastball early in the count," Capano said.

Beaufort High (1-3) again struggled to get its bats going, the same plague from losses to Stratford and Hilton Head High. And when the Eagles hit Smith well, Dolphins right fielder DeAngelo Moore made a pair of running catches and center fielder Michael Jennings slid to make a catch and save a run in the fifth.

The Eagles were aggressive while looking for a spark, swinging early in the count. Smith retired nine of his first 10 batters.

"If you keep your pitch count low, it feels good to keep on rolling," Smith said. "You know that your team has the lead, (and you can) go back in there every inning to try and close the door and get the win."

Beaufort High 000 000 0 -- 0 4 5

Battery Creek 101 010 0 -- 3 3 5

W: Thomas Smith (1-1) 7 IP, 0 R, 4 H, 5 K, 0 BB.

L: Brady Cormier (0-1) 5 IP, 3 R, 2 ER, 3 H, 3 K, 3 BB.

Top hitters: Beaufort High -- Zach Brown 2 for 3, SB. Battery Creek -- Craig Capano 2 for 2, HBP, 3 R.

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