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Bain Signs Letter of Intent to Play Baseball at IUP, Focusing on Helping Redbank Valley Win District 9 Class A Football Title

NEW BETHLEHEM, Pa. (EYT/D9) — Bryson Bain never expected to be in this position.

A baseball player at heart, Bain has used his strong right arm to rack up strikeouts and wins for the Redbank Valley baseball team.

(Pictured above, Bryson Bain is all smiles as he signs his National Letter of Intent to play baseball at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. He is flanked by his mother, Dianna, and father, Darren.)

So good has been his command and tenacity on the mound that the 6-foot-3 Bain earned a Division II scholarship offer from the Indiana University of Pennsylvania and signed his National Letter of Intent to go there recently.

Bain, though, has also used that same gifted right arm to help lead the Bulldogs’ football team to the District 9 Class A championship game this week against Union/A-C Valley.

“It’s definitely been a big surprise, I would say,” said the 6-foot-3 Bain, who had no idea what to expect when he decided to give football a whirl for the first time as a senior after not playing since the junior high.

He joined the team as a sophomore, but an elbow injury while playing baseball nixed that before he even got started.

“I wasn’t really expecting to be this successful. I mean, I came in wanted to be, but I never expected this. This has just been cherry on top.”

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Redbank Valley, Keystone, and Union/A-C Valley sports coverage on Explore and D9Sports.com is brought to you by Heeter Lumber.

There’s nothing wrong with his elbow now. Bain has thrown for 1,632 yards and 27 touchdowns to just five interceptions this year for the high-powered Redbank offense. He was recently named the District 9 Small School South Division Co-MVP with Brayden Fox of Brockway.

There is a wealth of weapons around him. Four players have double-digit receptions, led by Tate Minich’s 31 catches for 453 yards. Chris Marshall and Marquese Gardlock also have more than 400 yards receiving.

“Oh, it’s amazing,” Bain said. “It makes everything easier for me, having those guys catching balls and having great pockets from the line every time. It just makes everything 10 times easier.”

Bain had no qualms about joining the football team with an offer from IUP to play baseball in his back pocket. After all, football is a physical sport and the risk of injury is inherent in the game.

Bain shrugged off such worries, just as his basketball teammates, Marshall and Gardlock, dismissed those concerns when they decided to play football for the first time a couple of seasons ago.

“Bryson had every legitimate reason not to play football this year,” said Redbank Valley football coach Blane Gold. “He could have legitimately said, ‘I don’t want to get hurt.’ If you talk to him, he’s having a ton of fun.”


(Bain has made a huge impact in his first season of football for Redbank Valley/photo by Madison McFarland)

Bain had a breakout season on the baseball diamond last spring for the 14-5 Bulldogs. With a heavy, upper-80s fastball, as well as an array of off-speed pitches, Bain was the ace of the staff.

He also displayed the temperament needed to pitch in high-leverage situations. That has served him well on the football field, too.

He committed to play baseball at IUP in August.

Now that he is finally officially signed, an ever bigger weight is off his talented shoulders.

“It was good to get the signing over with and just solidify it,” Bain said. “You always talk about signing day. The kids I played travel ball with, we always talked about signing day, so it was pretty special. Now I can just enjoy the three sports I have left.”

Before Bain even gets to the baseball diamond for his senior year, he has another basketball season with Redbank Valley.

Bain averaged 18.6 points and eight rebounds per game last year for the Bulldogs. He’s just a few points shy of 1,000 in his career.

The winter is a good time for Bain to rest his arm.

“There was always a lot of pressure with baseball,” Bain said. “So doing basketball was always a nice little break from it, a chance to step away and do my own thing.”

Bain isn’t one to look too far ahead. He’s not even thinking about any other sport right now other than football.

And winning a district crown.

That could come Friday at Clarion University.

“I’m enjoying football right now,” Bain said. “It’s definitely something way different than I’ve ever done before. I’ve never been a part of something like this. I’ve played a lot of sports but I’ve never won a gold medal and I’m definitely enjoying this run.”

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Redbank Valley, Keystone, and Union/A-C Valley sports coverage on Explore and D9Sports.com is brought to you by Heeter Lumber.



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