Heartbreaker: Staunton rallies for four in ninth, stuns Waynesboro, 7-6

gens-braves3Waynesboro closer Frankie Romano had given up one earned run all season. Pitching for the third night in a row, Romano ran out of gas, and Staunton took advantage, scoring four runs in the bottom of the ninth to steal Game 1 of the second-round Valley League playoff series, 7-6.

Romano (1-2, 2.45 ERA) didn’t record an out in the ninth, which began with the Generals up, 6-4. He was charged with four runs on four hits and one walk, giving up a leadoff single to Kam Gellinger, back-to-back singles to William Kinney and Jack Schaaf to load the bases, an RBI single to Jordan Howard, and a four-pitch walk to Brad Jarreau, before being lifted.

Dillon Cate came in with the score at 6-5 Waynesboro. He walked Austin Edens on a 3-2 pitch to force in the tying run before getting Ryan Crile to pop up to third for the first out of the inning.

Kurtis Brown jumped on the first pitch of the next at bat for the game-winning single.

Waynesboro starter Tyler Howe got a no-decision after a nice effort earlier in the game, giving up three runs on six hits in six and a third innings, striking out three and walking three.

The Braves, the Valley League’s best team in the 2015 regular season, won despite committing a ghastly eight errors leading to five unearned runs.

Game 2 in the best-of-three series is Sunday at 7 p.m. at Linco Park at Kate Collins Field.

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