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Bedford, NH Post 54 faced Braintree, MA Post 86 in the first game of the 2014 Northeast Region 1 Junior American Legion Baseball Regional Tournament at Gill Stadium Saturday. Bedford's Jason Schneider wears his rally cap as Bedford fails to close the gap in the final inning of the game against Braintree. (Bruce Taylor/Union Leader)

Bedford bounced in American Legion tourney

MANCHESTER - Kevin Troy is the only varsity baseball player on the Braintree, Mass., Post 86 American Legion junior team, and he looked like it against Bedford's Post 54 on Saturday.

Troy, Braintree's cleanup hitter, collected three hits and drove in six runs to propel Braintree to a 10-7 triumph over Bedford on the first day of the American Legion Northeast Regional Junior Tournament at Gill Stadium.

Troy, who played outfield and filled the designated hitter role for Braintree High School last spring, flipped the momentum when he hit a three-run home run that handed Braintree a 10-6 lead in the sixth inning. The home run came minutes after Bedford had scored six runs in the bottom of the fifth.

"He's our cleanup hitter for a reason," Braintree coach Matt O'Connor said. "The big three-run homer is what gave us the confidence to finish out the last couple innings. He did have a great day for us."

Troy also had two doubles in the victory, one of which drove in three runs in the second inning.

Bedford fell behind 7-0 and wasn't putting up much resistance until it scored six runs on six hits in the fifth. The inning featured two-run doubles by Owen O'Brien and Ben Jones, an RBI double from Cam Bond and a run-scoring single by Andrew Fyfe.

Bedford, the runner-up to Dover in the New Hampshire state tournament, also received an RBI single from Jones in the sixth, when it left the bases loaded.

"It's tough to come back when you're down 7-0, but those six runs put us right back in the game," Bedford coach Mike LaFlamme said. "We just didn't get it done early today."

Jones and Mitch Roy each had three hits for Bedford in the loss. Bedford also received two hits from both Brian Fyfe and Cody Morel.

Although the tournament uses a single-elimination format, Bedford (14-8) will play a consolation game against the loser of Saturday's game between Riverside, R.I., and South Portland, Maine, today at 11 a.m. It's the first of four games on today's schedule.

Nick Demarquez, one of two 17-year-old players on the Braintree team, pitched the final two innings. Demarquez was scheduled to start today's contest.

"They had a good attitude and worked hard all year," Laflamme said. "We just didn't have it today."Tolland, Conn., 5, Warwick, R.I. 1: Catcher Dan Steiner had an RBI single and scored twice to help Tolland, the Connecticut state champion, advance to today's semifinals. Tolland will play the winner of Saturday's late game between Dover and Littleton, Mass., tonight at 7.

Evan Suchecki had an RBI and scored a run for Tolland, which led 2-0 after three innings and 5-0 heading to the fifth. Tolland received a complete-game pitching performance from Thomas Slane, who surrendered five hits.

Warwick picked up its run in the fifth, when David McMullen scored on Marcus Alexander's sacrifice fly to right field.

Warwick will play the Dover/Littleton loser in a consolation game today at 1:30 p.m.

rbrown@unionleader.com


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