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Bruins catch Storm in long week

PERU — The Bureau Valley Storm were finishing up a long week Friday with weary arms when they arrived to St. Bede Academy to face the Bruins in a crossover games between Three Rivers Conference teams in opposite sides of the league. It proved to be like throwing them into a pack of wolves rather than bruins.

St. Bede banged out 19 hits off three Storm pitchers in a 24-5 five-inning rout, including a pair of three-run homers by Ethan Duttlinger and Michael Bellino.

BV coach John Matlick knew it was going to be a tough assignment for the Storm pitchers, including junior Chris Shynk, who made his first start of the season.

“We had some difficulty throwing strikes. We were trying to pitch by committee out there. It’s a tough week when it’s a fourth game in five days,” Matlick said.

SBA coach John Bellino shrugged off his team’s big day at the plate.

“They didn’t have much pitching left, They played all week, too,” he said. “Yeah, we’ll take our hitting. We had our chances all week. We need to take advantage of those things.”

The Bruins coach said Bruins starter Gabe Braboy took full advantage of his opportunity on the mound Saturday. He held the Bruins to two runs and hits through four innings before giving way to freshman Brady Booker in the fifth.

“I was happy with our pitching. Gabe did a nice job. He’s moving himself up for us. He’s finding the strike zone,” he said. “I liked that we played good defense behind Gabe. I don’t know if we had an error, but again they didn’t hit the ball very hard. Mentally, I think that will help us.”

The Bruins opened the floodgates with 10 runs in the bottom of the fourth inning to go up 24-2. The Storm (1-4) got three runs back in the fifth when the freshman Booker had a little case of wildness, hitting three Storm batters.

“The nice thing is we got a lot of experience for kids who don’t normally get to play a lot. That’s good experience for those kids to get in a varsity game against a good team like that,” Matlick said. “We’ll just recoup, recover and get ready for the next game.”

Michael Bellino finished the day with three hits and three RBIs, including a double to the base of the left-field hill to go along with his pair of inside-the-park blasts. Dutlinger finished with 3 hits and 4 RBIs. The St. Bede field has no fence, so he had to huff and puff his away around the bases.

• Friday’s softball game between BV and St. Bede was canceled due to band-choir conflicts.

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