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By Dean Barker
After going down 7-2 in the top of the sixth, the #5 Broadway Bruins came storming back to beat the #7 Bridgewater Reds 12-7 on Sunday, July 25 in the regular season finale. The win gave the Bruins a 2-1 victory in the regular season series with the Reds. The win gave the Bruins a 10-11 regular season record, while the Reds had to settle for 6-15.
Bryce Turner picked up the win to improve to 1-1 for the season, giving up seven earned runs in seven innings with eight strikeouts and going 1-1 with three RBIs and a run scored at the plate. Derek Shifflet took the loss, giving up eight runs in seven innings on nine hits, while going 0-3 with an RBI and two runs scored at the plate. Shifflet recorded two strikeouts to complete the regular season with 65, the most in the RCBL this year.
The Reds punched first, with Shifflet scoring on a fielder’s choice ground ball from Antonio-Florentino Sosa. The Reds stranded two, and Justin Lohr’s triple in the bottom half was followed by an RBI single from Trent Abernathy to make the score 1-1.
Devon Neal would drive in Trevor Thomas on a sacrifice groundout in the third inning to take a 2-1 Broadway lead.
Shifflet would ground to Turner, who threw it into center field to allow Jared Meadows to score in the fourth. Hunter Miller ripped a single to score two. After a ground rule double from Chris Huffman, Sosa replicated to drive in two more runs and make it 6-2. Brett Tharp would launch one over the left field fence to make the score 7-2 in the top of the sixth, seemingly giving the Reds a sufficient cushion.
Lohr would drive in Kevin Rush with a single in the bottom half. Then, Trevor Thomas and Jett Shue would each get a two-run single to tie the game. Devon Neal would rip a single to plate Ben Reid and give the Bruins an 8-7 lead.
With two outs and the bases loaded, Turner would help his cause with a three run triple, and Ben Hutcheson drove him in with a single to make the final score 12-7 Broadway.
The Bruins left ten runners on base, two errors, and gave up five unearned runs. The Reds stranded eight with no errors and gave up no unearned runs.
Sosa went 2-5 with three RBIs. Miller went 1-3 with one RBI, one run scored, and two walks. Tharp went 1-4 with an RBI and a run scored. The Reds totaled just seven hits.
Lohr went 3-5 with an RBI and two runs scored. Thomas was 2-3 with two RBIs and three runs scored. Shue was 1-4 with two RBIs and a run scored. Abernathy was 2-4 with an RBI and a run scored. The Bruins had twelve hits.
When asked about the key to beating Montezuma in the quarterfinals, Turner was quite clear this offensive production would need to continue.
“Hit, it’s all about our hitting, you know,” Turner said. “We’ve got guys on the mound, it’s just been run support behind those guys lately. I think, after tonight, that’ll help us go into the playoffs and just carry some momentum. So, just hit the ball.”
The Bruins will travel to Montezuma to take on the #4 Braves Tuesday, July 27 at 7:30 pm in Game 1 of the RCBL Quarterfinals. The Reds will take on the #2 Clover Hill Bucks on Tuesday, July 27 at 7:30 pm for the quarterfinal opener at Buck Bowman Park.
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