Titles for two
July 2, 2014
Two of Fallon's three Cal Ripken all-star teams are moving onto their respective regional tournaments this month.
The under-10 and under-12 clubs each went undefeated in the state tournament at Silver State last weekend, beating the host in the championship on Sunday.
The U12 all-stars clubbed 12 home runs in the tournament to cruise into the finale before edging Silver State, 7-6. The U10 team also went undefeated against Silver State and Sun Valley in pool play before taking down Silver State to earn the bid from Nevada. The U8 team left pool play winless but scored a big upset over Spanish Springs in the single-elimination bracket before falling to Silver State on Sunday.
The U9 team didn't play because Fallon was the only team in the bracket, but it will not be competing in the regional.
"We had a pretty good showing," Fallon U12 coach James Richardson said of all three teams.
Both the U10 and U12 teams earned the No. 1 seed in Sunday's single-bracket portion after Silver State and Sun Valley battled each other in the No. 2 vs. No. 3 matchup.
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The U10 team advances to the regional in Tooele, Utah, while the U12 club will compete in Visalia, Calif. Both tournaments start on July 20 and the World Series will follow next month in Virginia (U10) or Maryland (U12).
For the U12 team, though, experience from playing together on the Hornets travel team helped pave the way for a state championship. The Hornets won three tournaments against Fernley, Yerington and Winnemucca before the all-star week. Including the all-star tournament victory, the U12 group has won 25 games in a row.
"I've had different kids everywhere. This particular group had most of my travel ball kids," Richardson said. "When we have all of them, we're a solid team. In previous years, we had half of them. People go on vacation, get burned out on baseball, various reasons."
The results were different as Spanish Springs normally comes out on top, but Fallon stole the show over the weekend, thanks to its explosiveness at the plate.
"I don't think it made a difference," Richardson said about Spanish Springs' absence this summer. "I believe if they were there, we would have taken care of them. We were definitely disappointed not to see them there."
Edgar Alvarado blasted five home runs over the four-day span while Dylan Wallace belted three. Tommy McCormick, Brock Richardson, Nate Galushia and Hunter each had one blast.
"They just went off the charts this weekend," coach Richardson said.
Wallace's three-run shot in Sunday's championship was the difference after Brock Richardson broke a tie with an RBI single in the fourth inning. Wallace's home run came in the final inning.
"They were saving their best pitcher," coach Richardson said about Sunday's game being close. "He didn't pitch the whole tournament, and we knew they saving him for the last game. He had a couple nice off pitches. We had to basically play a real baseball game where you have to grind to win. The kids stayed with it. They played great defense."