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Friday, Apr. 29, 2016

Braves beat BC-IG, Westwood in tourney games

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Here I come - Cherokee slugger Tim Jones heads to the plate in first round District tournament game against BC-IG. Photo by Mike Leckband
CHEROKEE - The number one ranked Cherokee Braves got started on the right foot in their first-round Class 2A District Tournament game against Battle Creek - Ida Grove here on July 5th, topping the Falcons 10 - 0 , in a game shortened to five innings because of the "ten-run" rule.

Kyle Ruehle threw a three-hit shutout for the Braves, the defending 2A State champs, striking out five BC-IG hitters in the process while not issuing any walks. Ruehle definitely helped himself at the plate as well, as he drove in three of the Braves' runs on three hits. Kyle Schuett, Scott Brown, Tyler Jones and Mark Johnson also drove in runs for Coach Scott Koch's Braves, who had eight hits. Battle Creek-Ida Grove committed three errors while the Braves, now 25-1, played errorless ball.

Cherokee played Westwood, 14-13 extra-inning first-round winners over Hinton, in district semi-final action at Cherokee on July 8th.

The defending Class 2A champion Braves took another step in defense of their title that night with an 11-0, six-inning win over Westwood of Sloan (24-9).

The Braves' fielders had a pretty easy night of it, as starting pitcher Cody Ege struck out 12 of the 15 batters he faced, and when junior fireballer Matt Koch came on in the 6th, he fanned another three, meaning that 15 of the 18 outs came by way of the "K."

There it goes - Mark Johnson connects for a third inning home run to right field against Westwood of Sloan. Photo by Dan Whitney
Following a coin toss prior to the game, the Braves were officially designated as the visiting team in Tuesday night's contest, even though they were, of course, the home team in reality - as evidenced by the large throng of Braves' supporters spread across the hillside at The Doupe. Cherokee started out strong, showing patience at the plate and making Rebel starting pitcher Greg Scott throw a lot of pitches in the opening frame. Designated hitter Tim Jones' two-run double to right was the only base hit the Braves managed in the inning, but between Rebel errors and bases on balls, the Braves put up a 3-0 lead. The Braves added two more in the top (yes, TOP) of the second, as senior outfielder Mark Johnson followed Tim Jones' lead and also went the other way, smashing a home run over the right field fence to make it 5 -0, Braves. Coach Scott Koch's hustling Braves added three more runs to their lead in the fourth and tacked on another in the 5th to make it 9-0. Another two in the 6th made it 11-0.

Sophomore portsider Ege, who had seven k's after three innings, left after the fifth, moving to first base as Koch came in to get the final three outs and allow the Brvaes to win by the ten-run rule in six innings.

Ege gave up just three hits and walked only one batter in his masterful effort, The sophomore also drove in two runs to help his own cause. Mark Johnson drove in three runs and Kyle Schuett and Tim Jones two runs each for the Braves, who totaled nine hits.

The Braves have won their two tournament games by a combined score of 21-0, and met Tri-Center of Neola, 2-0 winners over Logan-Magnolia , in the District 3 championship game July 12th in Mapleton.

The winner of that game advances to the Substate game against the District 4 winner July 15th at 7 p.m. in Carroll, for the right to go to the State Tournament at Principal Park in Des Moines.

Class 2A play at State will begin on Friday July 18 or Saturday July 19, depending upon the seeding of the teams.

A large crowd of fans cheered on the Cherokee Braves team, shown here in pre-game introductions, during their win over Westwood in Cherokee on July 8th. Photo by Dan Whitney.
The 2A semi-final games are scheduled to be played at noon and 2 p.m. on Thursday July 24, and the championship game is scheduled to begin at noon on Saturday July 26.

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