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Keystone Juniors win Section 3 crown with 4-2 win versus Selinsgrove

(SHAREIK FLOWERS/ THE EXPRESS) The Keystone Juniors pose with their championship banner after winning the Sectional 3 Championship Friday. Keystone defeated Selinsgrove in the game, 4-2.

By KENNY VARNER 

For The Express

LOCK HAVEN – Keystone Junior hurler Levi Schlesinger was cool under pressure Friday night in the Juniors Sectional Championship game against Selinsgrove.

Facing a one-out bases loaded, bottom of the seventh, Schlesinger refocused and struck out Selinsgrove’s Sylvan Martin and forced teammate Andrew Gephart to ground out to first, saving the 4-2 win for his team and starting pitcher Gabe Johnson.

“That was a tough spot to come into, obviously. They are a very good hitting baseball team and they got to him so we went out and and got him settled down,” Keystone manager Pat Johnson said. “He went back and did what he does and I’m proud of him.”

Starting pitcher Gabe Johnson, had a strong outing on the mound as he went 6 1/3 innings, allowing just five hits, one earned run, two total runs and struck out four.

Offensively, Keystone kids got strong efforts at the plate as they proved to be very patient on offense.

Braylen Corter went 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored.

However, it would be Mason Miller with the big night with a 3-for-4 effort with two singles and a triple.

Colin Simander also had a clutch night at the plate, posting two RBIs after coming off the bench.

Keystone pounded out nine hits on the night.

Taking the loss for Selinsgrove was Jake Anders.

Despite giving up two of the four runs, he also racked up the strikeouts against Keystone, sending down eight batters on strikeouts.

Keystone plated the first run of the game. Corter hustled out a play at first, reaching on an error.

He moved up to second and then third via the stolen base. He later scored on an RBI single by catcher Kelvin Probst.

However, Selinsgrove rallied back in the bottom inning posting two of its own.

For two more innings Selinsgrove kept Keystone scoreless. But things changed in the bottom of the fourth as it took the lead back, posting two runs.

Luke Bowman reached on an error at third. He was replaced by pinch runner Colby Keen.With one out, Gavin Burnell walked.Mason Miller’s single loaded the bases for Simander.

Simander was patient at the plate and picked up an RBI walk, tying it at two.

Corter singled in Burnell, giving his team the 3-2 advantage.

Then the defense took center stage as the Keystone defense shut down the base paths, refusing to allow any more runs.

Keystone added an insurance run in the sixth when Simander brought home Miller after he tripled to start things off.

In the seventh, Johnson picked up an out before running out of pitches.

He handed the ball over to Schlesinger for the save and the Keystone victory.

Keystone will start State Competition Tuesday as it travels to DuBois.

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