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Sports Article
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Braves Rally to Defeat Bear Cubs
Written by Bradley Schlegel, Staff Writer

            Despite mishandling a bunt late in the game, the Upper Perk Kiwanis Youth Legion team rallied to defeat the Boyertown Bear Cubs last weekend. Manager Peter Schramm described it as one of the team's most impressive wins of the season.

Upper Perk catcher, Ryan Cairns, tags out Kutztown's 

Daniel Yearick at home during Monday's 9-1 victory at

Bonekemper Field.

            The manager said the 8-3 road victory in the Berks County League was a sign of his team's growth. The roster features mostly players aged 14 and younger. One could be playing on the Upper Perkiomen Youth Baseball Association's 12U travel team.

            "We were down, and we made things happen," Schramm said. "It's very encouraging."

            Down 3-2 after allowing an earned run in the bottom of the sixth inning, the Braves (10-0 league, 13-4 overall) rallied for six runs on five hits in the top of the seventh inning on Saturday, June 15, at Lee Mecherly Field in Colebrookdale Township.

            Benjamin Sands and Benjamin Godshall each drove in two runs on a double and single, respectively. Ryan Cairns and Nate Schramm each added an RBI hit during the frame that saw 10 hitters come to the plate.

            Sands earned the mound victory in relief. He worked the final two innings, permitting just two hits and one walk to allow the Braves to remain undefeated in league play and defeat Boyertown, a team consisting mostly of 16-year-olds.

            The defending state champions displayed their youth in the victory. Upper Perk ended the game with Callen Schantz, a 13-year-old, at shortstop, and Jake Pedrick, 12, at second base.

            Pedrick, who entered the game when Sands relieved Adam Gavinski in the sixth inning, delivered a key sacrifice during the decisive six-run rally. He also recorded the final out of the game, catching a popup in shallow right field in the bottom of the seventh inning to secure his team's ninth straight league win.

            "Jake's going to be a heck of a player if he continues to put in the reps," Peter Schramm said of Pedrick, who earned a spot on the team following a successful tryout. "He's got a high IQ for the game."

            The Bear Cubs snapped a 2-2 tie in the bottom of the sixth by scoring an unearned run. After working two walks to open the inning, Jayden Majeda laid down a bunt on the left side of the infield, but Braves third baseman Liam Weiss couldn't handle the throw for the force out, allowing the run to score.

            However, Upper Perk responded with aplomb in the top of the seventh. Gavinski led off with a single to center after fouling off several pitches. Gavinski eventually scored the tying run on a wild pitch.

            After Pedrick's bunt and a walk to Zachary Adam, Sands drove home two with a double to deep center. Two hitters later, Nate Schramm delivered an RBI hit to left center. Godshall's two-run hit capped the outburst.

            Gavinski posted a team-high three hits for the Braves. Nate Schramm drove in two runs, while Sands, Godshall and Grayson Sabo each contributed two hits.

            On Monday, Nathan Schramm and Weiss led the team to its 10th consecutive Berks County League victory. Schramm drove in four runs and Weiss tossed a complete game in a 9-1 victory over Kutztown at Bonekemper Field.

            On the mound, Weiss scattered seven hits while striking out eight on 91 pitches for Upper Perk, which never trailed after scoring three runs in the second inning.

            Ryan Cairns finished with two hits and scored two runs. Weiss and Gavinski each posted two hits.

            Adam scored twice, drove in another and stole two bases for the Braves. Callen Shantz registered three of their 13 steals.

            Last week, they posted their eighth straight league win. Aiden Zuelch pitched them to a 10-1 victory over Spring City on Wednesday, June 12. Zuelch went the distance on the mound, allowing two hits and a first-inning run while striking out three and walking three.

            Nate Schramm and Sabo accounted for half of Upper Perk's eight hits. Both finished with two hits and drove in three runs.

            Nate Scramm, Cairns and Adam each scored two runs for the visiting Braves, who extended a 2-1 lead with three runs in the top of the third inning. Adam also stole three bases.






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