Brian Guthrie picked the right time to have his most prolific offensive game of the District 1 all-star tournament.
Guthrie went 3-for-3 with two homers and five RBI, and Kobe Morgan pitched a 1-hitter to lead the Carson City 12-year-old stars to an easy 11-0 mercy rule win over South Tahoe in the third-place game at Governors Field Friday night.
The win capped a tremendous stretch for Carson which won four straight after losses to Reno National and South Tahoe earlier in the week. Carson went 5-2 in its eight-day tournament run.
“From the time they showed up for batting practice you could see that they wanted to avenge that loss,” Carson manager Dave Navarro said. “You could see it in their eyes. It’s a bittersweet day because this is the last Little League game ever for our 12-year-olds. We went out in style, though.
“Guthrie is nicknamed “Animal”; he plays through anything. He gets down in the dirt and makes plays behind the plate. He plays hard. He has been swinging it well in the tournament.”
Both of Guthrie’s homers — a two-run shot in the third and a three-run shot in the fifth — were hard line drives. Both left the yard in a New York second.
Carson scored in four different innings, and Guthrie had a hand in three of the four scoring outbursts.
In the second, Morgan walked with one out. After the dangerous Eddie Tierney was retired, Guthrie ripped a shot to left-centerfield which was misplayed, allowing Morgan to score all the way from first. Guthrie came around to score moments later on a single by Tyler Gurrieri.
South Tahoe put up its only threat in the second. Losing pitcher Jason Aquino legged out a slow roller to short for an infield single, and was promptly thrown out by Guthrie. Morgan walked Ty Loughlin and Deven Suhka, but struck out No. 8 hitter Isaiah Daley to end the inning.
Morgan allowed just two baserunners the rest of the way, retiring 10 of the last 12 he faced. He fanned 11 and walked four, throwing 85 pitches in five innings. He struck out the side in the fourth and fifth innings.
“Kobe pitched a tremendous game,” Navarro said. “Kobe was a little wild, but consistent enough to get them to swing at some bad pitches, and that helped. He did a great job against their top four hitters (Cameron Lehmann, Andrew Lehmann. Erik Vasser and Jason Aquino).”
South Tahoe’s top four hitters were a combined 1-for-8 with four strikeouts and a walk.
Even though the first-inning runs were more than enough, Carson’s offense wasn’t through.
Tierney walked to lead off the third and scored ahead of Guthrie’s first homer to make it 4-0.
In the fourth, Justin Nussbaumer singled and scored when Morgan’s single was misplayed. Morgan took second on the play and advanced to third on a wild pitch. After Tierney walked again, Guthrie hammered an Aquino fastball over the fence in center to make it 7-0. After Gurrieri singled, Damian Branco doubled him in, and was then thrown out between second and third for the second out of the inning. Tyler Stagliano grounded out to end the inning.
In the fifth, Nussbaumer walked with two outs, and Morgan sent everybody home an inning early with a towering homer to right-centerfield.