Braves go 1-2 at tier I finals

The Red Deer Sports World Braves finished with a 1-2 record in the provincial midget AA tier I baseball championships during the weekend.

The Red Deer Sports World Braves finished with a 1-2 record in the provincial midget AA tier I baseball championships during the weekend.

The Braves opened play Saturday at Great Chief Park with an come-from-behind 11-9 win over Elk Point before dropping a 6-3 decision to Heisler, also at Great Chief.

However, the Heisler game never finished until 11 p.m. and the Braves had to meet the Grande Prairie Reds at 8 a.m. Sunday in Rocky Mountain House.

They never found their stride against the Reds and dropped a 12-1 decision, which eliminated them from the playoffs.

The Braves trailed Elk Point 8-5 after four innings, but rallied to score six times in the fifth with Joe Ireland’s two-run double the big blow. Ireland scored on Alec Mitchell’s triple.

Jeff Ireland was the offensive leader going three-for-four with three RBIs. Mitchell added a pair of singles to his triple while Chaz Piche had a double, single and scored twice.

Cal Ireland stroked a double while Jayden Hutlet added an RBI single.

Cal Ireland started on the mound and went 1 2/3 innings before giving way to Logan Marshall for two innings, Ty Elliott recorded the final out in the fourth and tossed a scoreless fifth to pick up the win. Jeff Ireland worked the sixth and seventh for the save.

Piche started against Heisler and worked 2 1/3 innings and left with the score tied 1-1.

Heisler then tallied twice in the fourth and three times in the seventh. The Braves managed two runs in the bottom of the seventh on a single by Marshall.

Mitchell drove in the other run in the fourth.

The Braves finished their season with a 14-12 record and it was the fifth consecutive season head coach Bob Ireland took a AA team to the tier I provincials.

Piche led the Braves pitching staff during the season while Jeff Ireland was the team’s leading hitter with a .406 average just ahead of Jay Letkeman’s .403 mark. Mitchell led the team with 22 RBIs and 10 extra base hits.

Twelve of the team’s 13 players are eligible for at least one more season of midget baseball.

l In midget AA tier II play, the host Lacombe Dodgers dropped a 12-1 decision to South Jasper Place in the final.

Lacombe beat Beaumont 6-5 and South Jasper Place stopped Stony Plain 16-6 in the semifinals.

In pool play Lacombe downed Stony Plain 10-5 and the Calgary Redbirds 26-7.