Nearly a week after suffering a 12-2 rout to TAS Legion in their Greater Norristown-Upper Montco American Legion opener, the Generals rebounded with a 5-3 victory over the host Double A's.

Ryan Mitchell went the distance and allowed just two hits and three bases on balls while striking out eight to earn the win. Keith Mastronardo paced the Valley Forge offense by tripling in two runs to key a three-run, second-inning rally.

"This was a little better outing for us than our first time out," said Generals coach Rich Lachenmayer. "We were without four starters in our first game; a couple were sick and a couple were at an awards banquet. We only had 10 boys, and our concentration was not there on Monday.

Mitchell yielded just a double to Matt Long in the third and a single to Kevin Lawrence in the sixth. Two of the runs were unearned and his catcher, Mike Rapine, helped his cause by throwing out two would-be base stealers at second base.

"My arm felt strong and my catcher is my best friend," Mitchell said. "We have a young team, a lot of new players from last year, but we definitely want to go deep into the playoffs."

Valley Forge took a 1-0 lead in the first inning when Long issued three walks and hit one batter. Rapine knocked in Larry Weber with a bases loaded walk, but shortstop Dan Maley got his team out of further damage by turning a double play to end the inning.

The Double A's (0-2) tied it in their first when speedy Andrew Driver walked to lead off and took two bases on a perfectly executed sacrifice bunt by Gerry DiNolfi. Driver later scored on Lawrence's fielder's choice grounder.

The Generals went ahead for good in the second when Mastronardo tripled in Sean Donahue and Weber, who both walked. Mastronardo scored on Mitchell's single to make it 4-1.

"It was too bad because he (Long) walked some batters and then we fell behind again and had to play catch-up again," said Norristown coach John Every. "Matt and (Josh) McAteer, who pitched last week, did not pitch during the high school season and they need a few games to feel strong."

The Double A's drew to within 4-3 in the third with the help of Long's double, an error and two wild pitches by Mitchell. But their only other threat was thwarted in the sixth when Mitchell fanned Mark Jones with the bases loaded and two out.

Valley Forge scored an insurance run in the fifth when Kyle Baker doubled and scored on an error. Every summoned Driver from the outfield and he responded by hurling two and two-thirds of perfect relief, but Mitchell remained strong.

"Ryan had a strong season as the top pitcher for Upper Merion High," said Lachenmayer. "We just need to find our other pitchers. We lost Kevin Monge, who has a labrum problem in his shoulder. And Baker, who would have been our No. 3 pitcher, has an arm problem and is not pitching."

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