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Hopewell Pony League Baseball

2024 Beaver County Pony League Champions- The Hopewell Vikings



RACCOON TWP– Entering the playoffs, the Hopewell Vikings were seeded No. 7 and realized it they were to achieve their ultimate goal that it would be difficult.

They would need to take on teams seeded higher than them, they’d be forced to play on 4 consecutive days, and they’d need to be able to string together some offense.

Bottom line is that it would be difficult but you’re trying to win a championship, so it should be hard.

Coach Jamie Yurcina’s 2024 Hopewell Vikings team overcame all those obstacles and beat a very good Freedom team, 5-3, to win the Beaver County Pony League Championship.

They actually accomplished this tremendous feat in style as James Armstrong and Collin Davis combined for a no-hitter! It’s only fitting since those two players led Hopewell’s pitching all season.

There was big game feel and atmosphere last night at Raccoon Twp Fields and maybe that led to some early jitters as Freedom took a 2-0 lead in the top of the first despite not registering a hit.

Freedom had the bases loaded with 0 outs, courtesy of two walks and a catcher’s interference, but Armstrong limited the damage with getting two ground balls to Jackson Yurcina at second base and ending the inning with a strikeout.

After that early hiccup in the first, Armstrong got on a roll by striking out the side in Freedom’s second and third innings.

Hopewell got on the scoreboard in the 3rd innings. With 1 out, Jaxson Covalt drew a walk on a 3-2 pitch and after advancing to second on a wild pitch, would then score on a base hit to right-center field by leadoff hitter Jayvion Lindsey. Freedom’s lead was reduced to 2-1. Then with 2 outs, Lindsey would score on a wild pitch.

The game went to the 4th inning all tied at 2.

Different inning but same results for Armstrong as once again he struck out all three Freedom hitters in the 4th inning. So, going back to the 1st inning, this is now 10 consecutive strikeouts for Armstrong.

In the top of the 5th, Armstrong struck out Hershey to lead off the frame (11 strikeouts in a row) and then the next two Freedom hitters grounded out to Yurcina at second and Camden Hoth at 3rd base.

In the bottom of the 5th, Hopewell got on the scoreboard and that led them to a championship.

Davis and Armstrong led off the inning with singles and that would be a key to winning this championship. In these two games against Freedom, Hopewell’s top three hitters in their lineup (Lindsey, Davis and Armstrong) went an amazing 16-for-24. Tonight, Davis went 4 for 4. In big games, your top players need to perform, and Hopewell certainly got that.

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With runners at 2nd and 3rd and 1 out, when throwing a ball back to the pitcher, the catcher threw it over the pitchers’ head and Davis immediately raced home to give Hopewell a 3-2 lead. On that play, Armstrong advanced to third and would score on a ground out by Andrew Arzberger. Hopewell led 4-2.

Because of the pitch count rule, Armstrong had one more inning left and went out in style as he once again struck out all three Freedom hitters.

Armstrong’s final pitching line tonight was: 6 innings, 0 hits, 2 runs (1 earned), 3 walks and 14 strikeouts.

In the top of the 7th, Hopewell added an insurance run. Yurcina led off with a walk and then with 1 out, Ryan Gaguzis had a great at-bat and singled on a line drive to center. With 2 on and 2 out, Lindsey drew a walk to load the bases for Davis, who singled to score Yurcina. Hopewell led 5-2.

Coach Yurcina brought out Davis to close the game and secure the championship and that’s exactly what he did.

After the leadoff hitter reached on an error, Speicher grounded out to Hoth at third, which was followed by Glass grounding out to Covalt at shortstop.

The last three Hopewell games have ended on fly outs to Lindsey in left, make that four as Hershey hit a ball to Lindsey and he easily secured the ball for the win and the championship.


After the game, both teams got team pictures together and received trophies.


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