Stockbridge Braves roll to opening win

By Jeffery Armstrong

The Stockbridge Braves erupted for six runs in the fifth inning to defeat the Browns Mill Yankees 10-2 Monday night during the first night of the AABC Sandy Koufax 13 Single Age State Tournament held at Richard Craig Park.

The Braves took advantage of wildness by the Yankees pitchers, coaxing seven walks in the contest. Five of the seven Braves who walked scored a run and the Braves scored in every inning except the fourth.

Braves shortstop Reggie Mitchell started the fifth with a walk and a run scored and he ended the game with a two-run single n in the same inning. The game was called in the fifth due to the eight-run mercy rule. Mitchell finished his day at the plate 2-for-2 with two runs scored and three RBIs.

While Mitchell and teammate Michael Oliver (3-for-3, two runs, one RBI) were a couple of Braves who had great days at the plate, Braves pitcher Bennie Keys had the most interesting day yet.

Deuces were wild for Keys all evening. Keys pitched all five innings, holding the Yankees to two runs on two hits and he hit two batters. He also went 2-for-2 at the plate with two runs scored and two walks. Just for good measure, Keys struck out nine and had one RBI.

"We were confident that we could win against the Yankees," said Keys, a rising eighth-grader at Babb Middle School. "I'm upset they got two hits off me."

Keys said that he pressed in his earlier at-bats but did better in his last two trips to the plate.

"I was out in front on my swing earlier, but I slowed down and was able to get some hits," Keys said.

Catcher Michael Thorne also scored two runs for the Braves, who belted nine hits. Weston Rockymore and Harrison Gary got the only hits and the only runs for Browns Mill. Mydrikus Easley also made a nice running catch in foul territory for the Yankees.