Braves edge Broncos
BARK RIVER — A fifth-inning comeback pushed the Gladstone Braves to a 5-4 win over the Bark River-Harris Broncos Monday evening in Bark River.
With two on and two outs in the fifth inning, Gladstone’s Austin Bagwell hit a line drive to center field to push teammates Casey Alworden and Nick Martin across the plate for the tying and go-ahead runs.
The Braves backed up their offense with a double play from Braden Sundquist — who got the force out at third — to Brennan Detiege at first to get the batter, Ethan Ives, out.
“The double play to win the game was great,” said Braves coach Joe Darmogray of the game-sealing play. “That was awesome. That’s what we preach all year. Get the ball, step on the bag and throw it over. Braden is baseball smart like that, so he knows that. It was good to see him pull that off.”
Tyler Darmogray started the game for the Braves and threw for three innings before Gavin Frossard came in in relief. Tyler had five strikeouts with three walks and gave up five hits for four runs, one earned.
Frossard had two strikeouts and allowed two hits.
Travis Mack handled pitching duties for the Broncos through the first four innings before Mason Bower came in to close for the final two innings.
Mack struck out five, walked four and gave up just one hit for three earned runs.
Bower allowed a walk, three hits and two earned runs.
Coach Darmogray was complimentary of the starting pitching from both teams — as well as Frossard — following the game.
“The two starters on both teams, I thought, pitched really well,” he said. “Gavin Frossard pitched great. He hasn’t pitched for us in a long time, and, to come in like that pretty much cold and ready to roll, he did great.”
Despite a bit of a shaky start from Mack — hitting four Gladstone batters in the first two innings — the Broncos kept their composure, as did Mack, to stay in contention for the game.
A bases-loaded walk in the second followed by a two-run RBI single from Charlie Guenette put the Broncos up 4-1 over the Braves, where they stayed until Bagwell’s winning at-bat.
“The last couple of starts, Travis has showed a lot of mental toughness, poise and composure out there because both of those starts didn’t start well for us. They were kind of like this one,” said Broncos coach Al Botwright. “He battled through it, and he kept us in it and pitched really, really, well. It’s unfortunate that his pitch count got driven so high so early.
“It would have been great to leave him out there and maybe try to finish this game as well as he was pitching in the middle portions of the game.”
Botwright added that Bower also performed well coming in for the Broncos in the fifth inning.
Overall, Botwright was pleased with the game.
“A very competitive game and a well-played ball game on both side,” he said. “Obviously, a one-run game — and those types of games come down to one big play that typically determines it late — and they got that huge single that drove in two runs, and we weren’t able to gain that run back.”