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Braves hang on against Westside, lose in next round
A furious late-inning rally by the Westside Indians was cut short by a time-limit against the county rival Colusa Braves during the majors division Tournament of Champions on Saturday in Browns Valley.
The Braves roared out to a 12-4 lead by the top of the fifth inning but the Indians refused to give up and rallied for five runs in the bottom of the fifth before losing 12-9. The Indians were eliminated from the tournament.
Westside's offense came alive in the fifth after Jacob Amsler led off with a walk and Dutch Kalfsbeek doubled. Angel Hernandez hit an RBI single to center field before an error allowed Kalfsbeek and Hernandez to score. Alex Richins crushed an RBI triple to right field and Cyrus Bremmer deposited a run-scoring double to center to pull the Indians within three runs 12-9.
With two outs, Bryce Alonso hit a sharp grounder behind the third base bag where Braves third baseman Gerry Moreno ranged to his right, fielded the ball and fired a perfect throw to first base for a razor-thin out to end the inning and the game.
"It's too bad they didn't get to play the whole game, I don't know how it would have ended but it would have been nice to get the whole six innings in. We were on a roll and I think we would have had a good chance at knocking Colusa out of the tournament but that's the way it goes, that's the rules," Westside manager Darrin Williams said.
Despite the disappointing end to the game for the Indians, the boys from Arbuckle recovered nicely from a slow start against a team that beat them twice during the regular season.
"They're a bunch of resilient boys, they get down for a minute but not for long. They're tough, they're fighters," Williams said.
Luke Williams demonstrated that toughness while pitching in the third inning when Colusa's Ethan Remmers crushed a sizzling line-drive up the middle that drilled Williams in the leg. Williams stayed in the game and escaped the inning without allowing a run.
Colusa's bats were on fire prior to the third inning, but they managed just one run in the fourth and another in the fifth.
"(The Indians) are a good group of guys and a good group of kids and they fought hard. This was a big game for them and they darn near pulled it off so again, a lot of credit goes to them," Colusa manager Dan Bailey said.
Zach Dillard gave the Braves an early lead with a two-run double to center field and Trevor Mendenhall raced home on a wild pitch later in the inning for an early 3-0 advantage.
Alonso doubled and scored on an RBI single by Kalfsbeek in the bottom half of the inning for the Indians.
Alec Bailey hit an RBI single in the second inning and Dillard hit his second two-run double of the game in the next at bat. Later in the inning Alvin Mainville drove in a run with a groundout to second base to give Colusa a 9-1 lead.
Alonso doubled and scored on a RBI double by Amsler in the third inning. Amsler scored on an error later in the inning, bringing the Indians within 10-3.
Mendenhall reached on a walk and scored on a wild pitch in the top of the fourth but the Indians responded with a run in the bottom half of the inning after Tommy Davis was hit by a pitch and scored on a wild pitch.
Bailey doubled in the top of the fifth for the Braves and scored on an RBI triple by Ben Davies to make the score 12-4, setting up the exciting final half inning.
"Our strategy going in was to try to keep as many pitchers as we could fresh and in order to do that you have to keep them under 20 pitches. We had one pitcher missing tonight so that threw a little wrinkle into it, but I thought we did a good job of doing that," Bailey said.
Marysville 13, Colusa 12
The Braves were eliminated from the Tournament of Champions on Sunday on a walk-off two-run home run against Marysville.
Bailey blasted two home runs, including one to put the Braves up by one run heading into the bottom half of the final inning, but it wasn't enough to hold off Marysville. Remmers hit a grand slam and Dillard added a home run of his own in the loss.
CONTACT Kirk Barron at 458-2121 or firstname.lastname@example.org.