Orioles edge Braves to win Blue Ridge title

July 22, 2011|By JACK HILL III | Staff Correspondent

SMITHSBURG — The Hagerstown Braves came up a little bit short against the Brunswick Orioles on Friday night in Game 4 of the Blue Ridge Adult League baseball championship series at Smithsburg High School.

The Braves could not produce enough offense in a heartbreaking 2-1 defeat to the Orioles that gave Brunswick a 3-1 win in the series.

“Tonight was just another classic Braves-Orioles game,” Hagerstown manager Mike Kipe said. “In every game of the series, we were always one play away from taking the lead. Tonight was the same story. We were one play away from having a lead in that game. I am proud of the whole team for playing as hard as they did throughout the series and throughout the entire playoffs after the up-and-down regular season.”

Brunswick (26-6) won its ninth straight BRAL title.

“This is a tough league,” Orioles manager Roger Dawson said. “This league has some of the toughest baseball competition around. We continued our dominance. We have been here before. We were playing extremely shorthanded tonight. I am just proud of the way that we pulled it out.”

Hagerstown (16-17) still qualified for the NABF Regional Tournament in Salisbury, Md., from Aug. 4-7.

Orioles shortstop Jake Darr went 6-for-10 in the championship series for Brunswick. He drove in both runs on Friday night to give him a series-high four RBIs.

Brunswick pitcher Travis Lee earned the complete-game victory, holding Hagerstown to one run over seven innings.

“Travis gave us a chance,” Dawson said. “I thought he only had a couple of shaky innings, but he worked out of jams. I thought he was consistent getting in the zone and keeping them off balance.”

Braves starting pitcher Matt Ridenour allowed just two runs in five innings.

The Braves took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning. Marcellus Sumlin doubled to right, went to third on a single to left by Tim Kellinger and scored on a single to left by Tyler Beard.

The Orioles tied the score in the second when Darr drew a bases-loaded walk. They got the winning run in the sixth on a sacrifice fly to center by Darr.

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