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BRAVES ADVANCE TO FINALS

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By Robert Balajadia

Braves’ third baseman Chad Palomo picked up a grounder and throws the ball towards first base to make the play. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Braves’ third baseman Chad Palomo picked up a grounder and throws the ball towards first base to make the play. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Da Braves avoided a Game 5 against the 76 Cardinals by beating them 10-4 in Game 4 of the Budweiser Baseball League Semifinals Series to advance to the championship game while still awaiting the winner of the BOG Athletics vs. Crown Bakery Phillies.

Winning pitcher for the Braves was Tony Yatar with 4K’s while R.J. Cruz gets the loss for the Cardinlas, who finished with 3K’s.

A strong seventh inning allowed the Braves to get their biggest lead of the game at 9-1, powered by a 3RBI triple by T.J. Sarmiento.  Da Braves scored four runs in the seventh inning to put the game just out of reach while avoiding a near eighth inning comeback by the Cardinals.

The Cardinals were still down 9-1 entering the bottom of the eighth inning when Da Braves began to make defensive substitutions.  Jared Alerta got a base hit to break the hitting cold streak for the Cards before a handful of errors by the Braves allowed two runners to score to cut the lead 9-3.  Coby Muna Barnes hit an RBI single to post another run for the Cards which gave their fans and teammates in the dugout a reason to celebrate.

Braves’ Paul Lujan came in for starting pitcher Tony Yatar in the seventh inning but Lujan was opening the door for a possible Cardinals comeback.  After Lujan walked Cardinals Shawn Dela Cruz, Da Braves went to their bullpen and brought out closer Cliff Raphael.

Raphael did not allow the Cardinals to gain another run despite having the bases loaded in the eighth inning.  Da Braves added another run in the top of the ninth inning while Raphael closed out the bottom of the ninth.

Braves’ starting pitcher Tony Yatar. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Braves’ starting pitcher Tony Yatar. (photo by Jesse Castro)

“We were up and yeah, they did score three runs but we just needed to get outs.  The more outs we get the faster we would win this game,” stated starting pitcher Tony Yatar on the near Cardinals comeback.

Da Braves jumped out to an early 5-0 lead in the top of the second inning behind a 2RBI single by B.J. Balajadia.  Cardinals starting pitcher R.J. Cruz had struck out Braves lead hitter Allen Sarmiento in the inning and managed to get Chad Palomo out at first a batter later.  Facing two outs, Balajadia slammed the RBI single and advanced to second base to extend the lead 3-0.

Braves Carl Quintanilla brought Balajadia in with an RBI single and Rico Castro brought in Quintanilla a play later with an RBI single as well to get the 5-0 early lead.

Braves Balajadia finished 2-5 with one run and 2RBI’s, while teammates Rico Castro went 3-6 for one RBI and TJ Sarmiento going 2-5 with two runs and 4RBI’s w/a triple.

Cardinals Coby Muna Barnes had the only RBI for his team.

When asked about their finals opponent and who was more dangerous Yatar responded with, “Whoever we play, no matter [Phillies] or [A’s], we’re going to come and play ball.  Whoever makes the least errors, best plays, and most hits are going to win.  The best team will be out there.”

The Phillies took Game 1 of the series on Thursday and the series will continue on Sunday, July 14.

 

PHOTO GALLERY BROUGHT TO YOU BY:

http://www.akguam.com/ou/tamuning-scion/

Braves’ Carl Quintanilla dives back to first base as Cardinals’ first baseman Jesse Alerta waits for the ball to arrive. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Braves’ Carl Quintanilla dives back to first base as Cardinals’ first baseman Jesse Alerta waits for the ball to arrive. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Cardinals starting pitcher R.J. Cruz. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Cardinals starting pitcher R.J. Cruz. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Braves’ B.J. Balajadia sends the ball out towards left field for a double RBI brining in teammates John Salas and Tony Doyle. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Braves’ B.J. Balajadia sends the ball out towards left field for a double RBI brining in teammates John Salas and Tony Doyle. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Cardinals’ Nick Cruz hit the ball out for a single RBI brining in teammate Jarred Alerta. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Cardinals’ Nick Cruz hit the ball out for a single RBI brining in teammate Jarred Alerta. (photo by Jesse Castro)

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COMING SOON …

  • 3rd Quarter Sports: Rugby, Boys Basketball, Softball, Tennis in full swing!

 

 

QUICK HITS

The Guam men’s national basketball team moved up four slots in the FIBA World Ranking to #72 after an impressive win over Mongolia and a hard-fought loss to Japan.
—————————————————
Shawn Bamba won the Arizona state wrestling championship while siblings Jussiah and Justyn took third place in their divisions at state.
Shawn (12th) won the 150-lb division while Jussiah (11th) took bronze in the 120-lb class and Justyn (9th) took bronze in the 106-lb category.
All three were born on Guam before moving to Surprise, Arizona in 2014, where they all picked up wrestling in 2016.
Their parents are Justin and Shannon Bamba from Pago Bay.

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