Two title-winning pitching performances and an ultimate clutch hit vie for final 'Prep Ballplayer' award for 2018 -
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Two title-winning pitching performances and an ultimate clutch hit vie for final ‘Prep Ballplayer’ award for 2018


The high school baseball season officially wrapped up this past week.

Last Monday, the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) ‘A’ and ‘B’ Conference champions – Archbishop Curley and Boys’ Latin, respectively — were crowned.

As that was happening, nine Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association (MPSSAA) regional finals were underway.

Two more rounds of playoff baseball were hosted by the MPSSAA: the state semifinals on Wednesday and the state title matchups which took place Friday and Saturday at Ripken Stadium in Aberdeen.

There were some great games and performances in the finals; titles were won by Boonsboro (Class 1A), Century (Class 2A), Thomas Johnson (Class 3A) and Howard (4A). (Links take you to each championship story/video.)

Because of the action-packed week, competition was tight for the three spots in our final “Prep Ballplayer of the Week” vote of 2018.

Sam Grace, Jr., RHP, Boys’ Latin

Boys’ Latin earned its third-straight MIAA ‘B’ Conference championship May 21. Grace allowed one run on three hits in a complete-game win against Glenelg Country School. The junior struck out eight batters in his outing. At the plate, Grace knocked in one of the team’s six runs.

Ryan Kulick, Jr., DH, Howard

Sometimes one swing is all it takes. Down to his last strike with two outs in the bottom of the seventh, Kulick smacked a two-run single up the middle, delivering Howard’s first state title with the 5-4 walkoff victory over Severna Park in the Class 4A championship. Talk about pressure. The Lions trailed by three runs entering the inning. They trimmed the lead to one thanks to two singles, two walks and a wild pitch, before Kulick’s heroics.

Jeremy Lapp, Sr., RHP, Century

The Knights won their first Class 2A West region title May 21. In the 14-9 victory versus Walkersville, Lapp had two hits – including a three-run homer — and five RBIs. Five days later, the right-hander got the ball in Century’s title game against La Plata. In five innings, Lapp gave up a run on three hits while striking out four in the Knight’s’ 4-1 win — their first state championship in baseball.

Others considered (listed alphabetically): Cam Clark (Severna Park); Josh DeRocher (Boonsboro); Gavin Evans (Archbishop Curley); Jackson Gazin (Boys’ Latin); Peyton Mason (Boonsboro); Zach Raico (Century); Tyler Rhoderick (Thomas Johnson); Tyler Roach (Century).

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