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Juniata holds off Bald Eagles in baseball action

By Kenny Varner

MIFFLINTOWN – Sometimes a win is a win no matter how it looks during a game.
Its not how you win the game it’s just that you win.
That was the philosophy the Juniata manager Nick Beward took after his Juniata baseball teams’ 6-5 nailbiting win over visiting Bald Eagle Area Eagles.
Despite the Indians committing four errors, the Juniata defense got the clutch out when they needed it and was able to hold on.
The Eagles’ also had its moments of miscues, committing five errors, themselves.
Both teams took advantage of the others’ misfortune for most of their runs.
“We committed our errors, we had our bad two innings tonight but all that matters at the end of the night just look at the scoreboard,” Beward said. “That’s the way we are going to look at it. It’s still early in the season and we are going to make these errors.”
Leading the offensive fire power for Juniata was Spencer Page as he lifted a homer that easily sailed over the left centerfield fence when the Indians needed a lift.
In relief of starter Donovan Ranck, Cade Kreider came in and looked strong and picked up the victory. Kreider went two and one-third inning for the win.
Teammate Dakota Nealman came in in the seventh and picked up the save.
Taking a 6-4 advantage into the top of the seventh, Kreider picked an early strike out to lead-off hitter Josh Gates.
With an error at third base allowing Ty Walker to reach, a hit to Beward went into his bullpen and went to Nealman. Nealman allowed Hunter Eminhizer to reach first as he moved Walker to third on the play.
Eminhizer was the game’s only multiple hitter going 3-for-4 on the night.
Nealman allowed Walker to score when a pitch to Luke Josefick hit the tip of the plate and jump over the backstop, allowing each runner to move up a base and at the same time closing the gap to 6-5.
However, Nealman found his control and struck out Josefick and Kyle Gill to end the ball game.
Juniata opened the scoring in the second inning, plating two in the inning, both unearned 2-0. Scoring on the inning was Kreider and Donovan Ranck.
Bald Eagle Area took advantage of two Juniata miscues to tie the contest.
The Indians went back up a run in the third when Page took the first pitch he saw and blasted it way over the fence, making it 3-2.
With two more miscues in the top of the fourth, Bald Eagle found itself up 4-3 as the game went into the bottom of the inning.
Kreider got his team jumped started early in the fourth, reaching on a lead-off single to left.
He later moved up to second. Is a wild pitch.
Korey Martin moved Kreider up to third thanks to a fielders choice that failed, putting runners on the corners with one out.
Nealman helped load the bases as he walked. Two errors later both Kreider and Nealman both scored, taking back the lead at 5-4.
In the sixth, Nealman got things going with a lead off double to center.
He moved to third by a picture perfect bunt by teammate Chase Kepner. He later scored on a fielders choice by Zack Snyder.
From there, the Indians was able to hold on and remained undefeated at 3-0.
“This was a non-league game, a good quality Mountain League team, we couldn’t be more thrilled right now,” Beward said. “We are happy to just come out with the ‘W'”

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