Tri-City Cardinals win District 11 Major's Tournament

Rocklin rally stalls
By: Joshua Gutierrez Placer Herald Correspondent
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The Tri-City Cardinals held off a late Yankee rally to capture the Major?s District 11 Tournament of Champions title by the score of 3-1. After the game, players and coaches were called onto the pitcher?s mound as each was awarded a district medal, commemorating their victory. The Gatorade-drenched manager for the Cardinals, Greg Hopping, gave high praise to his squad in a post-game interview. ?Outstanding,? said Hopping, as he dripped Gatorade onto the infield dirt. ?We peaked at the right time.? The Redbirds were backed by five solid innings from starter Chase Webb. ?My curve really wasn?t working,? said Webb as to the effectiveness of his pitches. ?I was just throwing fastballs and fastballs.? No. 21 allowed five hits and held Rocklin scoreless for the first five innings. Before being relieved in the sixth inning Webb recorded six strikeouts; five caught the batter looking as the third strike went by. At the plate, Webb helped his own pitching performance by knocking out a fifth-inning solo home run. Heading into the championship game, both teams rode in with the highest offensive output, each scoring 38 runs in their first three TOC games. But the championship game was decided on the strength of each team?s pitching. The game was scoreless through two and a half innings. Each team managed to get runners in scoring position but failed to drive in any runs. In the bottom half of the third inning, lead-off hitter Dominic Souto launched a 3-2 offering from the Yankee pitcher over the left-field fence. The solo shot put the Cards on top 1-0. In the very next inning, Tri-City would manage to load the bases for their slugging leadoff batter. The Cardinals? fans grew louder as the Yankees? fans held their breath. But a cheer erupted from Rocklin Little League partisans when grounded out to short to end the inning. From that play to the start of the fifth-inning, the cheers and applause on both sides became almost deafening. The stomping feet against the wooden bleachers echoed behind the chants of ?Here we go Yankees? and ?Here we go Cardinals.? In the fifth inning, the Cards pulled away two runs scored. The first came off a solo home run by Webb and the second run was driven in by left-fielder Will Roush. After falling behind 0-2, Roush worked his way back to a full count before getting the hit. In the sixth, the Cards held a 3-0 lead with Webb still on the mound. That changed when Yankee shortstop Andrew Mooney knocked a one-run home run to cut the deficit to two. Nick Hopping was called on to relieve Webb. After surrendering a base hit, Hopping struck out the next two batters putting Tri-City one out away from the title. Still, the Yankees did not go quietly. The next batter was awarded first base on a catcher?s interference call bringing the go-ahead run to the plate. Hopping used just five pitches to get the next batter to strike out but the final pitch got by the catcher allowing the Yanks to load the bases on a passed ball. Rocklin fans again put up a deafening roar as the next batter came to the plate. However, Hopping got him to swing at three untouchable fastballs to end the game. A pile of red-and white uniforms amassed on the third-base line as gloves and hats littered the infield. ?Let?s make this one last,? said Nick Hopping when asked about what was going through his mind during that final out. ?I only get one shot at this.? The Rocklin players who managed to get on base were met with the affections of teammates and coaches. The Yankees took a minute to stand against the fence separating them from friends and family who applauded their players with as much fervor as if they had won. Yankee skipper Mike Mooney spoke quickly in a post-game interview with a sincere statement reminiscent of someone who truly cares for his players, ?I?m so proud of them,? he said. 1 2 3 4 5 6 R H E RLL Yankees 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 5 0 TCLL Cardinals 0 0 1 0 2 X 3 6 0 Yankees AB H R BI Ry Mooney c 1 0 0 0 Ashby ss 3 2 0 0 A Mooney 1b 2 1 1 1 Wray p 3 1 0 0 J Cordrey lf 3 0 0 0 Gohl 3b 2 0 0 0 Dolan cf 2 1 0 0 Re Mooney ph 0 0 0 0 Hughes 2b 1 0 0 0 M Mooney ph 1 0 0 0 N Cordrey rf 1 0 0 0 Steinkel ph 2 0 0 0 Totals 21 5 1 1 2B: Wyatt Dolan (1), HR: Andrew Mooney (1, 1 rbi) LOB: 9 Cardinals AB H R BI D Souto c 2 1 1 1 Sturgis cf 3 1 0 0 Webb p 3 1 1 1 Hopping ss 2 0 1 0 Bridgeford 1b 2 0 0 0 Roush lf 3 1 0 1 J Souto 2b 3 1 0 0 Van Liew 3b 2 1 0 0 Bower ph 1 0 0 0 Frey rf 2 0 0 0 Lordge ph 0 0 0 0 Totals 23 6 3 3 HR: Dominic Souto (1, 1rbi), Chase Webb (1, 1rbi) LOB:9 Pitching Yankees IP H ER SO Zach Wray 4.0 5 3 2 Cory Gohl 1.0 1 0 2 Total 5.0 6 3 4 Cardinals IP H ER SO Chase Webb 5.0 4 1 6 Nick Hopping 1.0 1 0 4 Total 6.0 5 1 10