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Keystone wins defensive struggle 1-0 over Lehigh to open the Major Baseball State Tournament in Berwick

By BRETT R. CROSSLEY For the Webb Weekly  BERWICK—Keystone’s Braylen Corter had to be nearly perfect in his first postseason start as the District 12 and Section 3 Major Baseball Champions opened the State Tournament.  Corter scattered three hits, gave up two walks, and recorded eight strikeouts to help Keystone win a rain shortened game

BRETT R. CROSSLEY/FOR THE WEBB WEEKLY
Keystone’s Dallas Alexander is congratulated by his manager Patrick Johnson after hitting a leadoff single during the second inning of a Major Baseball State Tournament game in Berwick.

BRETT R. CROSSLEY/FOR THE WEBB WEEKLY
Keystone’s Braylen Corter delivers a pitch during a Major Baseball State Tournament game against Lehigh.

BRETT R. CROSSLEY/FOR THE WEBB WEEKLY
Keystone’s Connor Foltz signals to his teammates after hitting an infield single to score a run during the second inning of a Major Baseball State Tournament game.

By BRETT R. CROSSLEY

For the Webb Weekly 

BERWICK—Keystone’s Braylen Corter had to be nearly perfect in his first postseason start as the District 12 and Section 3 Major Baseball Champions opened the State Tournament. 

Corter scattered three hits, gave up two walks, and recorded eight strikeouts to help Keystone win a rain shortened game 1-0 over Lehigh at Berwick’s Ber Vaughn Park. Keystone will play KAU after it defeated Huntingdon 7-2 in the opening round of the tournament. That game is schedule for Monday at 7:30 p.m. Lehigh will play Huntingdon at 2:30 p.m. 

As for Sunday’s opening round game against Lehigh, Keystone proved it could win defensive struggles after two ten-run blowouts in three games to win the Section 3 Tournament. Behind the efforts of Corter on the mound as he matched Jonny Galgon and Bray Gonzalez pitch for pitch throughout the five inning game, Keystone showed it can win tight games. 

“That’s the pitcher we know he is,” Keystone manager Patrick Johnson said. “He was hitting his spots. After the second inning I asked him how he felt and he said he was great. We decided that we would at least go to 65 pitches and then it was a 1-0 ball game and we decided to ride the hot hand.” 

Before being asked about how he felt, Corter got through the first inning with two pop outs and the first of nine strikeouts. He ran into a little trouble in the second inning when a walk and single put a runner in scoring position. Corter shook off the offense by Lehigh and recorded another strikeout to end the inning and keep Keystone in front. 

Dallas Alexander recorded Keystone’s first hit with a single to open the second inning. He advanced on a throwing error when Lehigh’s catcher missed on a pick-off attempt. Connor Foltz then beat out an infield single to help score the game-winning run. 

Corter took care of the rest as the defense played well to keep Lehigh off the board. After a quick round of warmups to start the sixth lightning crossed the sky which forced a stoppage. 

“In a 1-0 game you keep with the hot hand,” Johnson said. “Corter kept getting players out. I hate to win a game like that, but they were two of the best pitchers in this tournament.” 

Lehigh’s Galgon and Gonzalez were outstanding against Keystone. Galgon retired the side in two of the three innings he pitched. Gonzalez struck out the first three batters he faced. 

Keystone 1, Lehigh 0

KEY 010 00—1 4 0

LEH 000 00—0 3 1

Braylen Corter and Gardner Fravel. Jonny Galgon, Bray Gonzalez (4), Noah Gyauch-Quirk (6), and Tate George. 

WP: Corter. LP: Galgon.  

Top Keystone hitters: Dallas Alexander 2-2, run. Top Leigh hitters: Jonny Galgon 1-1. 

Records: Keystone 1-0. Leigh 0-1. 

Next: Keystone vs. KAU at Ber Vaughn Park in Berwick, Monday, 7:30 p.m. Lehigh vs. Huntingdon at Ber Vaughn Park in Berwick, Monday 2:30 p.m. 

 

FIRST ROUND SCORES: 

Clarion 11, Ridley 9

Canonsburg 12, Black Mountain National 2 

KAU 7, Huntingdon 2

Keystone 1, Lehigh 0 

 

Monday’s games: 

Clarion vs. Canonsburg, 5 p.m. 

Keystone vs. KAU, 7:30 p.m. 

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