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Jesuit finds success in the Bishop Moore Challenge, taking out the nation's No. 1 and host team en route to title.
By JIM REESE
Published April 3, 2005
Jesuit won the second annual Bishop Moore Catholic School Challenge in Orlando on Friday night, defeating the host school 11-8 in eight innings.
Tournament MVP Jeff Younger (4-0) got the win in relief, pitching four innings and giving up only one hit.
It was the Tigers' second entry in the tournament, last year's journey ending in a semifinal defeat to Monsignor Pace of Miami. Jesuit avenged that loss by defeating the team in this year's quarterfinals. Monsignor Pace was ranked No. 1 in the country by Baseball America at the time. In topping Bishop Moore, the Tigers took down the state's No. 3 team in Class 3A.
"This was a great tournament for us," coach John Crumbley said. "Our bats got hot, we got some good pitching, and our defense was there when we needed it." Jesuit jumped to a 3-0 lead in the first inning Friday when Robby Kuzdale homered with two on, only to see Bishop Moore tie the score in the bottom of the inning. Jesuit (12-2) then scored three in the second when Justin Menendez led off with a triple and Chase Arias drove him home with a single.
An error on a sacrifice bunt put Jesuit runners at the corners, and a sacrifice fly by Daniel Martinez followed by a walk and a fielder's choice provided the Tigers with their second three-run lead of the game. But Bishop Moore answered with three runs in the third to tie it.
Jesuit was behind 8-7 entering the sixth. A walk followed by a sacrifice set the stage for Menendez to drive in the tying run with a single. A scoreless seventh followed to send the game into extra innings.
In the eighth, after a single and a successful sacrifice, Ryan Lockwood drove in the winning run with a single. Matt Dupell ended scoring for Jesuit with a two-out, two-run single.