Both Catonsville and Kenwood’s baseball teams learned a lesson from Thursday afternoon’s Baltimore County league game.

The Comets jumped out to a big 8-1 lead after two innings only to watch the visiting Bluebirds make a spirited comeback, cutting their deficit to 9-7 in the fifth inning. Catonsville added a couple of insurance runs in the home half of the inning to hold on for an 11-9 victory.

“We took advantage of some gifts early and we held off a good comeback by them,” said Comets coach Rich Hambor.  “But when we get a chance to put the game away early, then we really need to do it.”

Kenwood on the other hand learned that despite spotting Catonsville seven early runs, they have the capability to fight back into any game.

“If we could eliminate the first inning, we could have come out of here with an impressive win,” said Bluebirds coach Jay Diggs.  “But I have to give the kids credit, they came back and frankly, we were one pitch from tying this thing up. When you’re down 8-1 and you can come back, that’s a sign of a good team.”

Trailing 1-0 thanks to an RBI double by Kenwood (4-2) cleanup hitter Anthony Pelekakis, the Comets put six runs on the board in the bottom of the first inning.

Bluebirds starting pitcher Shane Campbell, who is headed to Maryland in the fall, struggled with his command.  Catonsville’s senior catcher Theo DiPace hit an RBI double to plate Zach Hall, tying the score at 1-1.

Campbell walked four batters in the opening frame and allowed four runners to score on two wild pitches and two passed balls.  The Comets batted around and sophomore second baseman Brendan McTaggert added an RBI single to help the home team jump out to a 6-1 lead.

Catonsville (4-0) added two more in the second inning off of relief pitcher Eugene McGeeney.  Robert Hopp starting off the second with a single and Eric Crum followed with a double.  Senior third baseman Will Hunt did his job by grounding out to the right side of the infield, allowing Hopp to score. Two batters later, Luke Land added an RBI single to add to the lead.

But the Bluebirds weren’t ready to fold. The Essex school turned the tables and cashed in on three Catonsville errors in the top of the fifth.  McGeeney had an RBI single to score Brandon Hovel and Eddie Cole added a two-run single to help Kenwood draw to within two runs.

After the Comets withstood the five-run fifth inning by Kenwood, Hunt launched a two-run home run to provide Catonsville the breathing room it needed to close out the game.

“We got on top of them quick and in the middle of the game we had a few minor mistakes that cost us a couple runs but we were able to stay strong and battle back,” Hunt said.

Catonsville 11, Kenwood 9

K             100         152         0              —             9              9              1

C             620         120         X             —             11            9              4

Campbell, McGeeney (1) and Schappell, Brzezinski (3); Schneider, Dixon (6), Crum (7) and DiPace.

WP: Schneider; LP: Campbell.

2B: K-Pelekakis, Campbell; C-DiPace, Crum.

HR:  C-Hunt.

RBI: K-McGeeney (2), Cole (2), Campbell, Brzezinski, Walker, Pelekakis; C-Hunt (3), McTaggert (2), DiPace, Land.