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Comeback kids; Big Valley 11/12s defeat Bellefonte

By Kenny Varner
BELLEVILLE – Early on things didn’t fare to well for the Big Valley 11-12year olds in their second season opener against a loaded Bellefonte team as the Red Raiders built up an early 5-0 advantage going into the bottom of the second.
But a true test of any good team is to be able to pull together when things aren’t as to their liking.
So in the bottom of the second, Big Valley rallied for an 8-run inning and. Ever looked back as it went onto the 14-8 victory Sunday.
“These kids all through the regular season are all battlers. Most of them do not know how to give up, they just battle,” Big Valley manager Gary Eichhorn said. “Our pitching is good. We don’t have anyone that’s going to blow the ball by you but when they need to hit their spots they do.
Offensively, Reagan Ettinger was the leader as he was a home run short of hitting for the cycle while driving four RBI and scoring a run. Kaden Mitchell also shined for the “Red and White” finishing with three two singles and a double with an RBI.
Teammates Landon Eichhorn, Caden Bell and Jaron Yoder all finished with two hits each.
Bellefonte was led at the plate by Triston Woodring-Heckman who posted two hits, one of them a monstrous grand slam that gave Bellefonte an early 4-0 advantage.
Teammates Kaden Clark and Dom Caperella both chipped in with two hits.
On the mound, Yoder took the ball as he went up against hurler Capperella.
Bellefonte led the game off with the hit bats.
With one out, Capperella helped his cause with a booming double into right.
Clark reached with a single to right field, putting runners on the corners.
Big Valley was able to pick up the second out of the inning.
Ethan Struble walked to load the bases for Woodring-Heckman.
With one swing of the bat, Bellefonte cleared the bases, making it 4-0.
Big Valley stopped the scoring at that point but failed to get any runs across in its part of the first.
Things seemed to flow a little easier for Big Valley in the second as Yoder struck out the first two batters in the inning.
But lead-off hitter Alex Ebeling blasted a solo shot to increase the lead to 5-0.
Coming off the field for their bats in the
Bottom of the second, the Mifflin County kids were looking more determined then upset of the early deficit.
Things started very quietly in the inning but snowballed into a game and momentum changing inning for the home team.
Daron Beaston walked to lead off the inning as did teammates Aiden Reed and Madden Weaver, loading the bases on three straight walk.
Brody Rishel brought in Beaston with a smoking single into right.
Landon Eichhorn scored Reed thanks to a single into left centerfield.
Reagan Ettinger got his team to within one run, blasting a 2RBI double, scoring Weaver and Rishel, cutting it to 5-4.
Yoder helped his own cause hustling out an infield single while picking up an RBI in the process, tying things at five.
Logan Stimely hustled out an infield error by Bellefonte, giving them a 6-5 advantage.
When the dust finally settled the result was an 8-5 Big Valley advantage as things went into the third inning.
Bellefonte got one back in the third on a Big Valley miscue that would score Struble, who led the inning off with a walk.
However, Big Valley was not going to let Bellefonte comeback that quickly and it erased the Bellefonte run with scoring one of its own in the bottom of the inning.
After posting a solid single, Yoder was brought home on the bat of Kaden Mitchell, making it 9-6.
Both teams again erased each other’s run totals as both played two in the fourth to keep Big Valley’s lead at three, 11-8.
But that would be all Big Valley would allow as Tucker Gill came in for Yoder in the third and him and his defense took their game up a notch and kept Bellefonte scoreless in its last two at bats of the game while offensively, they added three more insurance runs in the fifth en route to the 14-8 victory.
Big Valley will be back in action Thursday against a team and a location to be determined.

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