The Warren Boys Minors Americans all-star team advanced to the winner's bracket final with a 5-2 victory over Bradford, Wednesday, at Betts Jackson Field in Warren. The Americans (3-0) next travel to Brookville on Saturday with a spot in the District 10 tournament finals on the line.
Despite being on its home turf, the Americans played the role of visiting team on Wednesday after losing the pregame coin flip. That was the only "loss" of the evening for the Americans who quickly took control of the contest.
Tyler Gustafson led off the game with a double and Ben Salapek followed with a walk to set up some two-out dramatics from Jacob DeSimone. DeSimone smacked a clutch two-run double to give the locals a 2-0 lead through a half-inning.
Times Observer photo by Jonathan McAfoos
Warren Boys Minors Americans pitcher Tyler Gustafson throws a pitch to a Bradford batter during the first inning of an all-star game between the teams, Wednesday, at Betts-Jackson?Field in Warren.
Gustafson - also Warren's starting pitcher - helped his own cause in the second inning, extending the lead with an RBI single that plated Alex Borger.
Bradford erased the shutout in the fourth inning with a single tally, but RBI singles from Hunter Loomis and Salapek in the fifth and sixth innings helped give the Americans the insurance runs that they were looking for.
Gustafson worked three scoreless innings on the mound for Warren before giving way to Salapek. Salapek struck out four batters before reaching his pitch count in the sixth and Ryan Rafalski punched out the last two batters to earn a save. Gustafson and Micah Passmore each had two hits for the winners.
Warren Americans 210 011 - 5 8
Bradford 000 101 - 2 4
2b-Tyler Gustafson (W), Micah Passmore (W), Jacob DeSimone (W). WP-Gustafson. LP-Payton Manion. Save-Ryan Rafalski.