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Sports Article
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Winning Streak Snapped, but Braves Continue to Roll
Written by Bradley Schlegel, Staff Writer

            Upper Perk's Youth Legion baseball team had its 10-game winning streak snapped Sunday. The team got the winning run on base in the bottom of the seventh inning, but couldn't avoid a loss in the second game of a non-league home doubleheader.

Upper Perk third baseman Grason Sabo, tags a Ft Wash-

ington baserunner to record the final out of a 13-4 victory

Sunday.  The win extended the Braves' winning streak to

10 games. 

            The following day, the Braves returned to Bonekemper Field to start a new streak. Kyle Mazzie dominated Muhlenberg on the mound in a 4-0 victory on Monday. He allowed just one hit and registered nine strikeouts in the Berks County Area Youth Legion League.

            Connor Gehman delivered two of the six hits for Upper Perk, which scored three runs in the bottom of the fifth inning to extend a 1-0 lead. Brandon Godshall scored two runs.

            With six returning players from a team that finished third at last year's state tournament, the team is playing with significant confidence, according to Manager Rick Rossiter. He said the team could potentially return to states.  "I believe this team can at least get back to the state regional [tournament]," Rossiter said.

            Experience, and a wealth of starting pitching, has elevated the Braves to a 10-1 record in the legion league (14-3 overall). Last week, they collected four victories over three days, outscoring their opponents 45-7.

            The team features four players who competed for Upper Perkiomen's varsity baseball team – Owen Williams, Jake Schramm, Mazzie and Evan Sands – and five or six pitchers who work during league games. It also relies on aggressive base running.  "We're loaded with pitching," the manager said.

            On Sunday, their winning streak reached double figures following a 13-4 win over Ft. Washington in the first game. Cole Pierce and Grayson Sabo each delivered two hits and drove in three runs.

            Gehman finished with two hits and two RBIs, while Topher Burns scored three runs. Zane Saeger tossed five innings to earn the mound win. "We played solid, all-around baseball during the streak," Rossiter said.

            In the second game, the Braves built a 5-3 lead, but Norchester rallied for three runs (one earned) on four hits in the top of the seventh inning to post a 6-5 victory.

            Upper Perk threatened in the bottom of the seventh, putting runners on first and second with one out. However, Sabo's infield line drive led to a game-ending double play.

            Zach Adam and Burns each drove in a run for the Braves, who posted just five hits in the nightcap. Evan Sands recorded two of the Braves five stolen bases.

            Rossiter utilizes the non-league games as opportunities to get his reserves much-needed at-bats and his young pitchers necessary work.

          In the second game, only a handful of starters played significant innings. Rossiter said starting pitcher Benjamin Godshall, who allowed three runs over four innings, and Sabo have yet to work in the league.

            On June 16, the Braves needed only five innings to defeat Fleetwood. They pounded out 14 hits in a 16-0 victory. Burns registered a team-high three hits. Brody Weiss, Gehman, Sands and Cole Pierce each delivered two hits.

            The following day, the Braves swept a doubleheader from Shillington. In the first game, they rode a 10-run rally in the top of the seventh inning to a 13-3 win. Sands and Pierce each had two hits.

            On the mound, Schramm and Brandon

            Godshall combined to allow just three hits. In the second game, Pierce pitched the Braves to a 7-1 win. In five innings, he allowed just two hits. Sands drove in two runs. Brody Weiss (triple) and Kyle Mazzie (double) each added an extra-base hit.

            Burns shined on the mound in a 9-3 victory over Wyomissing on Saturday, June 18. In six innings, he permitted just one hit and registered three strikeouts.

            Mazzie posted a team-high three hits, including a triple and a double. Burns and Brayden Adam each delivered two hits.






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