Cumberland Times-News

July 24, 2013

Damascus’ Pascoe no-hits host Post 13

Right-hander fans 11 in win over Fort Cumberland

Mike Mathews
Cumberland Times-News

— POTOMAC PARK — As far as no-hitters go, Grant Pascoe’s was impressive, overpowering and nearly perfect.

It also may have set a state record for the longest to get in the books.

After being stopped in the third inning by rain late Tuesday night, Damascus and Fort Cumberland resumed their first-round game Wednesday morning and the right-hander finished the job and got plenty of run support in the process of a 10-0 win over the host of this year’s American Legion baseball state tournament.

It was the first no-hitter at any level for Pascoe, a graduate of Good Counsel High who will be continuing his career at UNC-Charlotte in a few weeks. He walked two, struck out 11 and allowed only four balls to be hit out of the infield.

Mother Nature stopped Pascoe Tuesday night, but Cumberland wasn’t able to Wednesday morning. He fanned six of the final nine batters with good command of his fast ball, curve and change up.

“My curve was definitely doing well and I had good break and location with it the whole game,’’ he said. “I started thinking about the no-hitter in about the fifth or sixth inning ... No one was saying anything to me in the dugout.”

He said having to complete the gem 12 hours after the rains came didn’t present any problems.

“I looked at (Tuesday night) as like bullpen work. It took a little energy out of things without the lights and crowd, but I enjoyed coming out and throwing again this morning.”

Pascoe threw 99 pitches, 62 for strikes, in a game shortened to seven innings by the 10-run mercy rule. Third baseman Dan Johnson scooped up a slow roller and threw to first to get Evan Harden by a step for the last out.

“Grant’s work ethic is top of the line and his ability to throw first-pitch strikes makes him such a good pitcher. And he has wonderful mechanics,’’ Damascus coach Tommy Davis said.

“He’s got the ability to hit spots and mix his pitches and locations. I’m sure if he just threw fast balls Cumberland would have been right on it after a few innings, but he was able to hit his spots with all his pitches and kept them off balance.”

Fort Cumberland coach Kenny Johnson saw the same thing.

“He put the ball where he wanted and didn’t get behind many batters,’’ he said. “He had a good curve and when we got behind in the count he got us to swing at some bad pitches at times.”

Damascus led 1-0 when the game resumed in the third inning Wednesday morning. Fort Cumberland had three errors that led to three unearned runs in the fourth that made it 4-0. A six-run fifth, highlighted by two-run singles by Emory McMinn, Alex Salem and Michael Zerafa, put the game away.

“We have good depth, at all positions, and our depth has carried us all season,’’ said Davis.

McMinn went 3 for 4 with a double and two singles, Zerafa and Casey Bulik had two singles and John Hanley a triple for Damascus, which had 11 hits and played errorless defense behind Pascoe.

Mike Mathews is a Cumberland Times-News sportswriter. Write to him at mmathews@times-news.com