Braves defeat Flivvers

GLADSTONE — Timely hitting and crafty baserunning helped the Gladstone Braves achieve one of their major goals here Thursday night in a 10-2 baseball triumph over the Kingsford Flivvers.

The victory enabled the Braves to clinch at least a share of the Great Northern Conference title.

Escanaba will try to do likewise when it resumes a suspended game against Menominee at Al Ness Field Tuesday.

Gladstone collected nine hits, including four in the third inning when it scored four times.

The Braves took a 6-1 lead on a single to leftfield by Aedan Creten, followed by a single to right-center by winning pitcher Braden Sundquist which gave them a 7-1 advantage.

A sacrifice fly to center by Cam Kelly made it 8-1, and a single to right by Gavin Frossard gave the Braves an eight-run cushion.

“Gaining a share of the GNC title is nice for these kids,” said Braves coach Joe Darmogray. “They did a lot of good things tonight. They’re starting to see the ball, and they’re hitting it good. They showed a lot of good baserunning skills. They’re playing real well right now.”

Kingsford scored its second run on Hunter Skoglund’s single to left in the fourth.

Casey Alworden ended the scoring on a wild pitch in Gladstone’s half of the inning.

The Braves, aided by Kelly’s double to left, scored their first two runs on Frossard’s suicide squeeze bunt and two errors in the opening frame.

John Soderman’s leadoff home run to left gave the Braves a 3-0 lead in the second.

Creten raised the count to 4-0 on a wild pitch, and Kelly’s sacrifice fly to right put Gladstone up by five runs.

The Flivvers got on the board on Gavin Trevillian’s single to center in the third inning of their regular-season finale.

“We were trying to play spoiler and hoped to give them a better game,” said Kingsford coach Matt LaLonde. “We knew they were going to do the suicide squeeze and wanted to keep the ball high in the (strike) zone. We’re a young team, although we have some good seniors. We have 4-5 freshmen starting every game. It’s a learning curve. Credit to Gladstone. They’re a good team, and they played a good game.”

Sundquist scattered four hits, struck out one and walked three through five innings. Austin Bagwell then retired the Flivvers in order in the sixth.

Kelly had two hits for the Braves, who ended their regular season in a single game at Denmark, Wis. Friday. They host Superior Central in their Division 3 district opener June 3.

“Kingsford has a good team,” said coach Darmogray. “They have a lot of good, young players. They’re going to be tough through the next couple years.”

Kingsford starter Sawyer Pugh worked three innings and took the loss. He walked three and allowed nine runs on seven hits. Trevillian fanned two, walked one and gave up a run on two hits in relief.

The Flivvers travel to Sault Ste. Marie Tuesday for their D-2 district opener against the host Blue Devils.


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