Landmark one win away from first state baseball title

Fri, 05/30/2008 - 7:01pm
By: Kevin Wandra

The Landmark Christian War Eagles had a chance to sweep visiting Pacelli and win the Class A state championship Friday, but Charles Rossi had other ideas.

Rossi had three RBI and pitched a complete-game five-hitter to lead Pacelli to a 4-1 victory over Landmark in Game 2 of the best-of-three state championship series.

The loss was Landmark's first in the state playoffs this season.

Rossi's stellar performance forced a Game 3, which will determine the state champion. Both teams will be vying for their first state baseball championship in school history.

Landmark led 1-0 in Game 2 after Kyle Wren’s RBI triple down the first base line in the top of the third inning.

But Rossi hit a game-tying, standup RBI double to the gap in left field in the bottom half of the inning, and the Vikings went ahead for good in the fifth on another run-scoring hit by Rossi, a two-out, two-run single to left field.

Stuart Wilkerson hit a solo homer over the left field fence to complete the scoring for Pacelli in the sixth.

The run-scoring hits by Rossi and Wilkinson accounted for the few mistakes made by Landmark right-hander Tanner Bryant, who held the Vikings to four hits.

Rossi, meanwhile, confounded Landmark with a repertoire of junk, off-speed pitches thrown across his body. He struck out seven and scattered five hits to record the complete-game victory.

Game 3 will be played tomorrow at 4:30 p.m. in Fairburn.

Landmark jumped all over Pacelli early en route to winning Game 1 6-3.

The War Eagles scored four runs in the bottom of the first thanks to RBIs from Blake Austin, Colby Wren and a two-run blast from Bryant. Austin added another RBI in the second and another in the bottom of the sixth and also picked up the save.

Michael Boylan contributed to this story.

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