Cats played role in first champion


Ali Single

Pitt-Johnsotwn junior pitcher Brady Walker started for Martella’s Pharmacy in the AAABA Championship Game on Aug. 11 against New Orleans at Sargent’s Stadium at the Point.

Matt Churella, News Editor

Johnstown residents had never won a championship in the All-American Amateur Baseball Association tournament’s 74-year history until Martella’s Pharmacy defeated the defending champion New Orleans Boosters 3-2 on Aug. 11.

The Martella’s team, which included seven Pitt-Johnstown Mountain Cats, ousted New Orleans during a championship game at Sargent’s Stadium at the Point in Johnstown.

Sophomore Boston Bradley, who has played baseball for 16 years, was one of the seven Mountain Cats involved in the championship-winning game.

“In my first at bat, I stepped up to the plate with bases loaded and was able to put a good swing on a ball for a single to score the second run of the game,” Bradley said. 

Pitt-Johnstown sophomore Joel Colledge  was a pitcher for the Martella’s championship team. He said he agreed with Bradley, adding that he won’t forget playing baseball in front of nearly 6,000 people.

“It was something I never experienced before, and it was an amazing feeling. As a student, it felt great to represent my school in something so big,” Colledge said.

Pitt-Johnstown Junior Brady Walker was the starting pitcher in the championship game against New Orleans.

“Being that I got to experience every pitch was truly a dream come true. With all the fans and the energy in the stadium, it’s hard to explain how crazy it was to play in front of that many people.”

Bradley said celebrating with his teammates was a feeling he will never forget.

 “The city had truly been waiting for a local team to win, and to be able to be the ones who did it, is something that has a very special meaning to all of us.”

Martella’s Pharmacy assistant coach Matt Hohan said the historic win happened because of the team’s “good chemistry.”

“We formed the team to not only be an entry into the tournament, representing Johnstown, but to win the whole thing,” Hohan said. “We took each game as starting a new season 0-0, and we came to win. That win wasn’t just for us; it was for the people of Johnstown.”

 Walker agree that the victory was for the whole community.

Hohan said Walker was the team’s ace pitcher.

“He put on one (outstanding) performance in the tournament. We gave him the ball opening night because we knew what he was capable of, and we got the job done.”

Other Pitt-Johnstown athletes involved in the win included sophomores Tyler Smith, Braxton Roxby and Raymond Watt. Senior Eric Ford was part of the championship-winning Martella’s Pharmacy team, too.

Mountain Cat Coach Todd Williams did not respond to an email asking for comment on the team’s seven players who won the AAABA championship game.