LARGO, Md. – Siri-Jacob Ramirez (Orlando, Fla./Cenapec [Dominican Republic]) and Austin Adams (Fayetteville, Ga./Whitewater) powered a five-run seventh while Michael Hovermill, Jr. (Poughkeepsie, N.Y./Spackenkill) gutted out a complete-game effort to propel Prince George's Community College past Surry Community College 11-9 to win the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Division III District D Championship and earn a spot in the NJCAA Division III World Series.
The Owls (33-13-1) will be one of seven teams to advance to the NJCAA World Series after winning a district title while one at-large team will also join the field. The bracket will be announced by Wednesday.
Trailing 6-5 in the seventh, Ramirez smacked a two-run double off the left center fence and then Adams drilled a three-run homerun to center field for a 10-6 lead. The Knights (28-22-1) got three runs back in the eighth to make it a one-run game. Bay To (Philadelphia, Pa./Neumann) added a solo homer in the bottom of the eighth for a two-run cushion.
Hovermill, who was throwing on three-days rest after picking up the win against Montgomery in the NJCAA Division III Region XX Championship Game on Tuesday, went into the ninth inning with 90 pitches thrown and struck out the first batter looking and the second swinging before Harold Marte (Haymarket, Va./Battlefield) smothered a ground ball behind first base that Hovermill picked up and stepped on the bag to record the final out to send the Owls to the World Series. The freshman went the distance and recorded 10 strikeouts for his eighth win of the year to also earn NJCAA Division III District D Most Valuable Player honors.
To finished the game 4-for-5 with three runs scored and an RBI while Dakota McFadden (Largo, Md./Heide Trask [N.C.]) posted a 3-for-3 performance with two runs scored and an RBI. Adams finished with a hit, a run scored and four RBIs and Ramirez registered a hit, two runs scored and two RBIs in the winning effort.
Jordan Huntley went 3-for-5 with two homers, three runs scored and two RBIs, and finished the three games with three round trippers after smacking a three-run homer in the opener on Friday. Neil Hutchens went 4-for-5 with four RBIs and a run scored and Hunter Travis tallied three hits and two runs scored in the loss.
The two teams battled back and forth before Prince George's scored six of the final nine runs to come away with the victory.
After Huntley broke a 5-all tie with a solo homer in the sixth, the Owls scored five times in the seventh. To doubled to left center to start the rally and McFadden was intentionally walked before Marte loaded the bases after being hit with the pitch. With one out, Ramirez smacked a double off the left center fence to bring home To and McFadden for a 7-6 advantage. Adams then came through with a two-out drive over the center field fence for a four-run lead at 10-6.
Surry responded with three runs on Huntley's second run of the day and a two-run double to right field by Hutchens to cut the deficit to 10-9, but Hutchens was gunned down at second when he over slide the bag to end the threat.
To gave Hovermill an extra run to work with on a solo homer to center with one out in the eighth, but Hovermill did not need the run after setting the Knights down in order in the ninth to preserve the win.
Surry jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first thanks to the first run scoring on an error, a Sawyer Davis RBI single and an RBI groundout by Hutchens. The Knights extended their lead to five runs with two runs in the third after a run-scoring double by Hutchens and an RBI single by A.J. Canine.
Prince George's got on the scoreboard with a run in the third. After Dwayne Coleman (Lothian, Md./Southern) and To reached on an error and McFadden walked, Marte hit a sacrifice fly to right to cut the margin to 5-1.
A two-run fourth for the Owls made it a two-run game. Ramirez walked and moved to second on a wild pitch and to third on a groundout before Adams scored Ramirez on an RBI groundout. Brandon Crosby (Richmond, Va./Atlee, Mechanicsville) then smoked a homer to center to trim the margin to 5-3.
Prince George's tied the game at 5 with two runs in the fifth. To singled to left and touched home on McFadden's double to left center while McFadden moved to third on an error on the play. Marte then hit his second sacrifice fly of the afternoon to score McFadden with the game-tying run.
Huntley had a quick response for the Knights with a solo homer to lead off the sixth to reclaim the lead at 6-5. The Owls then scored six of the final nine runs to rally for the victory.
The Owls will be making their second trip to the NJCAA Division III World Series under head coach Buddy Foster and first since 2014.