Bethesda Big Train heads to Ripken League Championship Series

Bethesda Big Train logo

BETHESDA — The Bethesda Big Train advanced to the Cal Ripken League championship series Thursday by virtue of their 14-8 victory over the Silver Spring-Takoma Thunderbolts at Shirley Povich Field.

Bethesda outfielders Tyler Villaroman and Jacob Westerman helped the Big Train’s cause by posting some gaudy statistics.

Villaroman went 3-for-5 and scored three runs and registered four RBI’s while Westerman batted 3-for-3 with an RBI and scored a run.

Big Train catcher Carson Taylor added two hits and four RBI’s to help Bethesda move into the championship round.

Bethesda took a 2-0 lead early in the game thanks to Fox Semones, Villaroman and Alec Burleson.


Richard Montgomery Rockets defeat Good Counsel to win Maryland Elite Hoops championship

Richard Montgomery Rockets' Austin Cheung takes a charge from Good Counsel's Bez Mbeng (5) in the final critical minutes of the Elite Summer League Championship Game played at the Charles E. Smith Jewish Day Center on Wednesday. PHOTO BY GEORGE SMITHGood Counsel's Bez Mbeng (5) charges RM Rockets' Austin Cheung in the final critical minutes of the Maryland Elite Summer League championship game at the Charles E. Smith Jewish Day Center on Wednesday night.           PHOTO BY GEORGE SMITH  NORTH BETHESDA — The 2018 Maryland Elite Summer Basketball League season came to a close Wednesday night as the No. 3-seeded Richard Montgomery Rockets came through when Ryan Cornish made a key steal and hit the game-winning layup to help the Rockets beat the No. 5-seeded Good Counsel Falcons 31-29 and win the championship.

“As a team, we did it all together,” Cornish said. “Not one of us took it over. It was all as one team.”

There wasn’t much scoring in this game. After all, the final score was only 31-29. Both teams failed to score within the first minute. Missed shots and turnovers were key in the championship game.

Nonetheless, the game was still close throughout, as RM led 16-14 at halftime behind eight points from Cornish. He added five more points in the second half to finish with 13.


Sentinel Names All-County Girls Hoops

Basketball through the hoopCoach of the Year – Fred Swick, Poolesville

Swick guided the Falcons to an unbeaten 27-0 record including the Maryland 2A state championship.

Co-Player of the Year – Erin Green, Poolesville, Sr.

The 6-foot-3 standout averaged 13.6 points, seven rebounds and four blocks per game while leading the Falcons to their first state championship in school history.


RM defeats defending champion Oakdale in summer hoops semifinals

Oakdale Bears vs. Richard Montgomery RocketsROCKVILLE — The Richard Montgomery Rockets dethroned the defending champion Oakdale Bears of Frederick County on Tuesday by a score of 47-33 in the Maryland Elite Summer Basketball League semifinals to set up a date against the Good Counsel Falcons just 24 hours later in the championship game.

The second-seeded Bears took the court without a few of their top scorers and the Rockets took full advantage. Richard Montgomery’s Henok Kassahun (10 points) and Djordje Orcev (14 points) both earned all of their buckets in the second half. Ryan Cornish added another 10 points and registered nearly double-digit assists and rebounds.

While the game stayed close in the first half, the second half proved to be Oakdale’s undoing, since the Bears managed only free throws for five straight minutes.


With G-Burg defeat, Good Counsel heads to summer league championship


Gaithersburg Trojans vs. Good Counsel FalconsROCKVILLE — “Earn your spot.”

That’s the phrase Good Counsel head coach Anthony Guy repeated to his players over and over throughout the summer season as the Good Counsel Falcons participated in the Maryland Elite Summer Basketball League.

The Falcons took that motto to heart on Tuesday and earned their spot in Wednesday’s championship finals by soundly defeating the top-seeded Gaithersburg Trojans 62-39 at Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School Daniel Pearl Memorial Gymnasium.

Evident on the court was another of Guy’s mantras: “strength in numbers.” With a handful of key players missing the semifinals game due to other commitments, Falcons like RJ Floyd (17 points) and Bez Mbeng (19 points) made short work of the Trojans to ensure Good Counsel never relinquished its comfortable lead.


Springbrook Blue Devils fall to Oakdale Bears 66-62 in Md. Elite playoffs

Oakdale Bears vs. Springbrook Blue DevilsROCKVILLE — The Springbrook Blue Devils’ season ended prematurely on Monday in the Maryland Elite Basketball Summer League.

The Oakdale Bears, one of the top programs in Frederick County, toppled the Blue Devils, 66-62, to advance to the semifinals at Jewish Day School.

Oakdale was led by the talented backcourt tandem of seniors Mussa Crawford and Collin Schlee who combined for 38 points in the win.


RM Rockets blast Einstein 49-43, advance to Md. Elite hoops semifinals

RM Rockets vs. Einstein TitansROCKVILLE — Richard Montgomery advanced to the Maryland Elite Basketball Summer League semifinals with a 49-43 victory over Einstein on Monday at Jewish Day School.

Richard Montgomery’s cast of characters included Djordje Orcev, Kordell Lewis, Devin Liyanamana and Ryan Cornish who combined to score the majority of the Rockets points.

Orcev and Lewis finished with 15 points each and Liyanamana added eight points while Cornish dropped six points for Richard Montgomery.

“They are a great defensive team,” said Einstein senior guard Camren Ashby. “Their help defense is amazing and I give them props. They made shots when they were supposed to and they played great defense.”


G-Burg Trojans beat Northwest Jags in triple OT summer hoops playoff thriller

Gaithersburg Trojans vs. Northwest JaguarsROCKVILLE — The second round of the Maryland Elite Basketball Summer League playoffs began Monday evening at Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School, and the first matchup involved the No. 1-seeded Gaithersburg Trojans facing the No. 8-seeded Northwest Jaguars. The game became a nail-biter as it took triple overtime to settle it; in the end, the Trojans came out with the 67-66 victory.

This matchup was close throughout, as Gaithersburg led at halftime 29-27 with 17 points from rising sophomore Jao Ituka.

14-year-old Ituka had an incredible performance, as he put up 40 total points, which included the game-winning layup in triple OT. He also threw down two dunks in the first half.

“It was good to help my team win,” Ituka said. “It could have been better player-wise, because I took a lot of bad shots and I didn’t see a lot of my teammates when they were open.”


Rockville Express vanquish Baltimore Dodgers in Ripken League action, 7-1

Rockville Express vs. Baltimore DodgersHANOVER — In a game between the two teams at the bottom of the Cal Ripken Collegiate Baseball League’s North division, the Rockville Express vanquished the Baltimore Dodgers 7-1.

Both teams were playing for nothing: the Dodgers were comfortably in last place and had no chance of making it to the playoffs this late in the season, while the Express just missed the postseason by a single game.

“It doesn’t bother me too much because we played so well down the stretch, we did all we could do to get in. We beat several good teams in July, and just didn’t quite make it,” said Express head coach Rick Price.


T-Bolts shut out G-Burg 5-0, clinch spot in Ripken League playoffs

Silver Spring-Takoma Thunderbolts' Josh Simon (17) battles Gaithersburg Giants' pitching. The T-Bolts put up five runs to advance into postseason play. PHOTO BY MIKE CLARKSilver Spring-Takoma Thunderbolts' Josh Simon (17) battles Gaithersburg Giants' pitching. The T-Bolts put up five runs to advance into postseason play.   PHOTO BY MIKE CLARK  SILVER SPRING — On Friday night in the last regular season game, the visiting Gaithersburg Giants (20-20) played the Silver Spring-Takoma Thunderbolts (18-22). The T-Bolts needed a win to get in the Cal Ripken Collegiate Baseball League playoffs, and they did just that as they shut out the Giants at Blair High School 5-0.

“It’s been a long season,” Silver Spring-Takoma manager Doug Remer said. “We had to win the last three. So you don’t think about winning it, and you just kind of get out here and give it your all.”

The Thunderbolts put up two runs in the bottom of the first, thanks to outfielder Jack Schroeder singling up the middle and driving in second baseman Hunter Pearre, and first baseman Zach Buck hitting a sac fly to right field and sending home outfielder Corey Rosier.