Franklin Township stays alive
Mike Feifel/TIMES NEWS Danny Keer rounds the bases after he hit a homerun vs. White Haven on Wednesday night. FT beat WH 23-2.
That was the chant the 12-year-old Franklin Township little league team used in its dugout after its victory over White Haven on Wednesday.
Franklin Township beat up on White Haven in its losers' bracket game at Phifer Ice Dam, winning 23-2 in four innings of play. All 11 Franklin players reached base safely and scored at least one run on the day. It was the perfect way for Franklin to bounce back from its previous loss to Valley East.
"The team felt like we had a let down last game, so we were really committed at practice to correcting that," said Franklin manager Frank Bokan Sr. "We were ready to go right off the bat this time. We came out in the first inning and got it going."
As Bokan Sr. alluded to, his Franklin team came out swinging. After a leadoff single by his son Frank Jr. (2-for-5, 3 R) and a walk from Jack Schaeffer (1-for-2, 3 BB, 4 R), Dan Keer stepped to the plate looking to make an immediate impact. Keer wasted no time as he sent the first pitch he saw over the center field fence for a three-run homer.
Keer ended up having an outstanding day at the plate. He added four more RBIs in the second inning on a two-RBI double and a two-RBI single. He would take one off the helmet in the fourth before singling later in the inning. He finished the day 4-for-4 with seven RBIs and three runs scored.
"I was looking to hit it into the gap," said Keer on his first inning homerun. "I just swung and it went over the fence."
After plating four runs in the first, Franklin added ten more in the second. Keer knocked in four while teammates Collin Haupt and Nolan Wentz (2-for-3, 2 RBIs) each drove in one.
White Haven didn't help its cause in the inning, as it committed five errors in the field. Three other runs scored on wild pitches.
Gabe Wagner also had a big day for Franklin. The catcher tripled home a run in the third for his first hit of the game. He then had the greatest moment a baseball player can have in the fourth when he went deep for a grand slam.
"I was just looking for a base hit," Wagner said about his grand slam. "I didn't expect to hit it out.
"Everyone was hitting today. It makes it a lot more fun when everyone is getting hits and scoring runs."
Dalton Berger and Jon Herman (2-for-4) added RBI-singles in Franklin's eight-run fourth inning. At one point seven consecutive Franklin hitters reached based and scored.
Bokan Jr. and Berger both did great on the hill as well. Bokan Jr. started the game and allowed just two hits and one earned run while striking out four. Berger then came in in the third and allowed just one hit while punching out two.
"I thought they really pitched well," said Bokan Sr. "They were both focused and right around the plate. Even on their balls they were just missing, so I thought they did a great job today."
Franklin will most likely play again on Saturday against a team to be determined at a site to be determined.
Franklin Twp. 4(10)1 8 - 23 14 4
White Haven 110 0 - 2 3 7
Bokan, Berger (3) and Wagner; Hayes, Lunney (2), Pitman (2), Belles (4) and Sledziewski. W - Bokan, L - Hayes. HR: FT - Keer (1st, two on), Wagner (4th, three on); WH - Belles (1st, none on).