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Gullo Gets 100th Win As Central Tops Rival Gardens

The Palm Beach Central Broncos came into their game on Wednesday with plenty of extra motivation. The Broncos went on the road against one of their biggest rivals, with not only bragging rights at stake, but also a career milestone for manager Tony Gullo.

Even with those stakes, Central felt no pressure, jumping out to an early five run lead, and then cruising to an 8-1 win. The victory was the 100th of Gullo’s career since taking over the head job at Central.

The mound work was split evenly on this night between senior lefty Hector Camacho, who went four innings, allowing only two hits, and Charlie Houd, who threw the back three innings, while also allowing only two hits.

While Camacho and Houd carried the weight on the mound, the Broncos also took care of business at the plate, with seven hitters combining to pound out 13 hits. Juan Gonzalez led the way, going 3-for-3. Jake Carman did his part as well, adding three hits, two runs, and three RBIs.

The game started out as a pitchers duel between Camacho, and the Gators Colton Schwartz. David Urrutia scored the only run of the first three innings on a second inning passed ball.

In the fourth, however, the Broncos broke through for four runs off Gardens reliever Lucas Valencia, although only one of the runs was earned.

Gonzalez got the rally started with a one out single. Back-to-back errors loaded the bases for the Broncos. Carman then made the score 3-0 with a two-RBI single. After a strikeout and a walk, Camacho singled to complete the four run inning.

Central added a run in the fifth, and two more in the seventh, extending the lead to 8-0. Gardens finally broke through in the bottom of the last frame, but the damage had already been done, and they fell to their rivals 8-1.

The win was the 100th of Gullo’s career at Central, but as has been the style of the Broncos manager, he chose to keep the focus on his players.

“It’s not about me,” said Gullo. “It’s about these young men becoming better ballplayers and better people.”

The process of becoming better ballplayers has shown up early this season, as the Broncos have raced out to a perfect 4-0 start. They opened their season by winning the City Tournament, held annually at Forest Hill, and followed that up with Tuesdays win over their rivals.

Central will be tested over their next six games, with all of their opponents currently holding records over .500. Four of those six games will also be on the road.

For Gardens, the 2023 was expected to be somewhat of a rebuilding year, after reaching the state Final Four last season. The Gators have run into teams with a combined record of 13-5 through their first four games, and the schedule doesn’t get any easier, with 4-1 Dwyer, and 2-1 Jupiter coming to town in their next two games.

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