Warren couldn't have picked a better time to wake up the bats.
The Girls Minors All-Stars exploded for eight runs in the fourth inning and added four more for insurance in the fifth en route to a 16-7 win over Bradford on a rainy Thursday at the Farm Colony Complex.
Warren will look to make it two in a row and stay in the winners bracket on Saturday when it visits St. Mary's for a 4 p.m. game.
Times Observer photo by Ben Oviatt
Warren Girls Minors all-star pitcher Mallorie Baumgrotz winds and delivers a pitch during an opening round all-star game with Bradford, Thursday, at Farm Colony B. Warren opened postseason play with a 16-7 victory and will next play Saturday in Saint Marys.
After allowing a Bradford run in the first, Warren knotted the game up in the bottom of the inning when Alexis Nyquist was hit by a pitch before stealing second and third, and coming in to score on a fielder's choice from Marissa Grubbs.
The visitors kept the pressure coming with three more runs in the second inning, and Warren was only able to get one back when Alex Neureiter scored on an overthrow, making it a 4-2 lead in favor of Bradford.
Warren starter Jordan Sitler blanked Bradford in the top of the third, and the offense came through to tie the game once again in the home half. Grubbs led things off with a bunt single and stole her way around the bases to cut the lead to one, and Taylor Childress reached on an infield single of her own before coming around on two stolen bases and scoring on another wild pitch.
Bradford 130 300 - 7 4
Warren 112 84x - 16 6
2b-Emily Warner (B). 3b-Shelby Kuzminski (W). WP-Mallorie Baumgrotz. LP-Abby Wolfe.
Another three spot from Bradford put Warren behind one more time until a big bottom of the fourth gave the home team all the offense they would need the rest of the way.
After drawing three walks to load the bases, Sitler came in to score on a wild pitch, and Shelby Kuzminski ripped a triple into centerfield, scoring two and tying the game at seven each.
Warren took the lead for good when Kuzminski, Childress, and Kamryn Weissinger scored, and Kelsey Stuart singled home Mallorie Baumgrotz before swiping home herself on the throw back to the pitcher to cap off the eight-run output.
Baumgrotz - pitching in relief of Sitler - worked out of a bases loaded jam in the top of the fifth without allowing a run, and Warren posted four more on RBIs from Nyquist, Kuzminski, and two from Neureiter to take a nine-run lead heading into the final inning, where a Bradford runner trying to steal second was gunned out by the catcher Kuzminski, and Baumgrotz notched a pair of strikeouts to end the game.
Kuzminski led the way offensively with three RBI on two hits for Warren. Grubbs, Stuart, Childress and Delaney Chase each added a hit, while Childress came around to score three times. Every spot int he batting order scored at least one run for Warren.
Baumgrotz and Sitler combined to hold Bradford to just four hits, with Baumgrotz getting credit for the win after working the game's final three innings, registering eight strikeouts. She did not allow an earned run, leaving the bases loaded twice and two on to end the game. Sitler also struck out eight over three-plus innings.