Braves fare best at Coaches Vs. Cancer Classic
Ryan Okoniewski bats against the Jets. (Photo by Dylan Malone)
BERNE— South Adams High School had their first opportunity to host the Coaches Versus Cancer Classic in its third year of existence on Saturday in what turned out to be one of the nicest days of the early spring season albeit blustery.
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The Starfires did not fare as well as the weather, however, going 0-2 against Adams Central and Bellmont in the opening and closing games. Bellmont was a winner over the Jets in the middle game. All proceeds from the concession stands as well as entrance fees were donated for cancer research.
Bellmont 6, AC 2 (game two)
In the featured game of the day between two undefeated squads, Bellmont’s six-run fourth inning proved to be the difference maker as the Braves held on to a 6-2 final.
Neither team scored a run until that fourth inning as Mason Shinabery battled with AC’s freshman hurler, Andrew Hammond.
In the frame, Josh Hall and Sawyer Boyd began the rally with a pair of walks followed by Kyle Wittwer singling to load the bases. After a few passed balls scored two, Josh Brune would squeeze bunt Wittwer in on the next at-bat. Adam Weaver’s double was followed up by a dropped ball in center off the bat of Brett Baker for another run and Shinabery’s single would score Baker.
The final run of the inning for Bellmont came when AC catcher Kyle Baker tried to make a throw to third against a stealing Shinabery. Baker’s arm made contact with Parker Zeser in the box and the ball sailed into left field making it 6-0 Bellmont after the inning break.
The Braves’ run in the fourth was accomplished with just two hits aided by two AC errors and a pair of free passes. Clayton Harkless would shut down the Braves for the final three innings as the Jets’ reliever allowed just two more hits with four K’s.
The Jets would make it interesting in the seventh as Brett Baker came on to close the game out. The reliever seemed well on his way striking out the first two batters faced but Matt Baker stroked a single to keep AC alive. His brother Kyle Baker would beat out a single on the infield that had to be confirmed by the home plate official who overturned the out call and Harkless would single in a run for AC on the next at-bat.
The game ended abruptly on the next at-bat, however, as Lengerich’s double scored Kyle Baker but Harkless was gunned down at the plate by the Braves’ defensive for the third out.
Hammond took the loss allowing five earned runs on two hits with five walks and five strikeouts. Shinabery took the victory going six innings and allowing no runs on just four scattered Jets hits with a walk and five K’s.