ALTOONA - The Mifflin County Babe Ruth 13-year-old All-Stars put on a hitting clinic in Gettysburg at the District 7 tournament during the first weekend of July when it pounded out 45 hits in two games.
On Wednesday, the clinic continued in Altoona.
Mifflin County won its opening game of the Pennsylvania Babe Ruth 13-year-old tournament with an 11-3 win over Middletown Township, the District 3 champion from Bucks County. Mifflin County continues 'pool' play today at 11 a.m. against Brookhaven, the District 6 champion.
In the eight-run win, Mifflin County pounded out 15 hits.
"We hit the ball well tonight," Mifflin County manager Fred Zook said. "Our pitching was outstanding too, but we won this game on defense. That team (Middletown Township) was a hard hitting team and we made some outstanding plays in the field."
Mifflin County only committed one error and turned two double plays. In fact, the game ended in the bottom of the seventh on a double play.
Middletown's Michael Burns led off the seventh with a double. Greg Wenclawick grounded out to Ty Bodtorf at shortstop, who made a deep throw from his position. Eric Gale then hit another grounder to Bodtorf and he tossed it to Jake Spickler at first for the second out of the inning.
On the play, Burns tried to go to third and then Spickler threw over to Jordan Marshall. He applied the tag and the game was over.
Bodtorf picked up the win as he went five innings. He struck out two, walked four and gave up four hits. Spickler and Marshall got one out each in the sixth before giving way to Cade Attick, who finished with one and one-third innings of shutout work.
But, it was with the bats that Mifflin County put the game away. Marshall became just the fourth player to get at least four hits in a game twice. Marshall did it in the opening game of the district tournament and he did it again on Wednesday.
Marshall singled four straight times as he drove in two runs and scored twice. He finished 4-for-5.
The other three players to achieve that accomplishment are Colton Spade, Carter Spade and Hunter Shuff. Carter Spade and Shuff are still playing for the 15-year-olds.
Mifflin County got some big hits from the bottom of its lineup. Jonah Kile had three hits, while Trent Hidlay and Justin Rodkey came off the bench to each get two hits.
In the first inning, Bodtorf walked, stole second and scored on Marshall's first hit of the day.
Attick led off the third with a triple as he slammed a ball to left field and then saw it bounce over the fielder's head and roll to the fence. Two outs later, he scored on a ground ball from Bodtorf.
Mifflin County then had a two-out rally as Marshall, Damon Jasper and Isaac Maclay strung together three hits in a row. For Maclay it was his first hit of the tournament trail and his double made it a 3-1 game.
Mifflin County increased its lead to 6-2 in the top of the fourth inning. With one out, Kile singled and Attick walked. Gage Boreman moved the runners up with a sacrifice bunt. Bodtorf then singled home two runs and Marshall drove him home with a base hit.
In the fifth, Mifflin County started to pull away with three more runs. Again it was three hits in a row that put the runs on the board.
With one out, Hidlay singled and Rodkey followed with an RBI double. Kile followed that up with another run producing double. Kile came home as Attick reached on an error.
In the sixth, Mifflin County scored two more runs as Marshall singled to open the inning. It looked like he was going to stay at first as the next two batters made outs. But, Hidlay and Rodkey came through with run producing singles.
Notes: It marked the second straight year that Mifflin County has opened the 13-year-old state tournament in Altoona with a win over Middletown. Last year the Fred Zook coached team beat Middletown 13-4.....Mifflin County now has a 28-10 record in opening games of the state tournament at the 13-year-old level and overall has a 59-24 mark....Mifflin County has a 2-0 record against Brookhaven, beating it in 1983 (13-year-olds), 14-13 and in 2005 at the 14-year-old level, 9-5. Both games were played in Milroy and both Mifflin County teams went on win a state title.