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Braves Charge into Berks Youth League Playoffs
Written by Bradley Schlegel, Staff Writer
2022-07-06

            After posting victories in its final four regular season games, Upper Perk Youth Legion Manager Rick Rossiter sent his players on a brief hiatus from baseball

Shortstop Evan Sands reaches a ground ball during 

Upper Perkiomen's final regular season home game on 

Wednesday, June 29.  The team defeated Daniel Boon 5-0.

following its regular season finale Tuesday, an 18-0 victory over a team from Spring City. Rossiter described it as a mid-season break.  "Hopefully we'll have a lot more baseball to play," he said.

            The Braves open the Berks Area Youth Legion League playoffs with the ultimate goal of getting back to the state tournament. With six returning starters, Rossiter says he likes their chances.  "As long as we play our game, I know we'll be fine," the manager said.

The team opens the eight-team double elimination tournament as the No. 2 seed at home on Saturday. To qualify for regionals, they will likely have to win the tournament or finish behind Boyertown and Shillington, who have already secured spots at the regionals.

            The Bear-Cubs clinched the league's regular season title and one of two berths. The Dodgers are hosting a tournament.

            The Braves (15-3 league, 20-4-1 overall) didn't need much help in their final two regular season victories.  Jack Schramm allowed just three base runners in a 5-0 victory over Daniel Boone on Wednesday, June 29 at Bonekemper Field.

            Two days later, Kyle Mazzie and Connor Gehman led the Braves to a 15-2 road victory over Topton Post 217 On Friday, July 1. Mazzie delivered a team-high three hits, scoring three runs and driving in two.

            Evan Sands finished with two hits and scored two runs for the team, which clinched the win in five innings and posted 16 hits. Zane Saeger scored three runs.  Gehman added two hits and tossed four innings in the victory. He allowed one earned run and struck out seven.

            Rossiter said Upper Perk has benefitted from the experience gained during last year's run to a third-place finish at states. He described the half-dozen regulars who played significant innings last season – Owen Williams, Brody Weiss, Mazzie, Sands, Saeger and Schramm – as team leaders on and off the field.
            "They are all very coachable," Rossiter said. "It's helpful for the younger guys to see the older players doing all the right things."

            Against Daniel Boone, Schramm needed just 85 pitches to complete his shutout. He registered seven strikeouts and scattered two hits, retiring the final 10 hitters in order to conclude Upper Perk's final regular season home game.

            Rossiter described Schramm as the ace of the staff. However, he says there's not a lot of distance between Schramm and Mazzie.  "Kyle is very close," the manager said.

            The Braves supported Schramm with flawless defense.  The infield handed nine chances without a misplay.

            Upper Perk utilized its speed to score one run in the first inning and three more in the fourth.

            Williams, who led off the game by reaching base on an infield error, stole two bases and scored on Pierce's bunt.

            Brayden Adam's and Ryan Sink's aggressive base running helped lead to a pair of runs in the fourth inning. Both took advantage of throwing errors to cross home plate. Adam added an RBI single to spark the rally.

            Saeger's single in the sixth inning capped the scoring. His hit to left plated Adam.

            Sink led the Braves with three hits. Adam scored two runs.

 


 

 

 

 

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