BOYS JUNIORS: Fighting back

Too little, too late.

The Warren Boys Juniors All-Stars gave Bradford all it could handle in the final two innings, but ultimately saw their comeback fall short during a 7-5 loss, Tuesday, at Old Legion Field in North Warren.

Warren (1-1) remains alive in postseason play and will host Punxsutawney in an elimination game on Wednesday. That game will be played at Old Legion Field with the regularly scheduled Senior Legion game between Blair and Post 135 possibly being moved to Youngsville or postponed.

Bradford, serving as the home team after winning the pregame coin toss, blanked Warren for the first three innings while piling up six runs to take a commanding lead early on.

The Warren bats broke through in the top of the fourth when Colby Johnson singled home Conner Ristau for his team’s first run of the game. Ristau had singled to lead off the inning before advancing to second on a groundout by Seth Baldensperger.

Bradford got that run back in the bottom half of the inning and the two teams battled through a scoreless fifth before Warren began to mount its comeback in the sixth.

Dominick Funari singled to start the rally and he would come around to score on a single from Baldensperger. Baldensperger was able to advance to second on the throw home. Johnson followed with a walk and Drake Gens kept the runs coming with an RBI double in the gap that cut the deficit to 7-3.

With runners on second and third, Adam Irwin roped a single that scored Johnson, but Gens was thrown out at home by the Bradford centerfielder, ending the inning with Warren down, 7-4.

Bradford threatened to extend the lead in the bottom of the sixth, but a routine pop fly to Gens at first base turned into an inning ending double play when the runner on second was caught off the bag for out number three.

In the seventh, Adam Barker and Nate Betts led off with walks and Funari put down a sacrifice bunt to put the tying run at the plate with just one out. Ristau followed with a fielders choice that cut the gap to two, but Bradford would record the game’s final out before Warren could get any closer.

Ristau and Gens led the way offensively with two hits and one RBI for Warren. Baldensperger, Johnson and Irwin each had one hit and one RBI and Funari had one hit in the loss.