For the second straight playoff season, Braham bats were stymied by Royalton’s Matt Silbernick when the Royals knocked out the Bombers 4-2 in the May 24 opening round of the Section 5A tournament.
A triple by Cade Stang led to a 2-0 Royalton lead in the top of the first. The Bombers answered to tie the game when Casey Grell walked, Alex Sutton singled, Johnny Clemmer walked, then Noah Bone smashed a grounder through the second baseman to plate the two runs. Silbernick did not allow another Bomber hit the next six innings.
Senior Grell also threw well for Braham, finishing with 5 strikeouts, 6 hits allowed and no walks. The Royals added the runs they needed in the third, aided by two Braham errors.
The Bombers finished the weather-marred season with a 5-9 mark. Sixth-seed Royalton (6-11) opened the double-elimination round of eight with a 3-1 win over Rush City May 28. Also alive in the 5A winners’ bracket are East top-seed Hinckey-Finlayson (10-2 over Pillager on May 28), West No. 1 seed Osakis (5-0 over St. John’s Prep) and West No. 3 Upsala-Swanville (2-1 over Browerville).
Great River Baseball
FINAL: Aitkin 11-0, 16-2; Hinckley-Fin. 10-2, 14-2; Pine City 9-3, 10-6; Rush City 8-5, 9-5; Braham 5-7, 5-9; Ogilvie 5-7, 5-9; Isle 4-7, 4-12; East Central 1-11, 2-13; Onamia 0-11, 0-13.