Carson stars gear up for state tourney
For the first time since 1992, a Carson City Little League all-star team will play for the right to make the trip to San Bernardino for the Western Regionals.
The Carson 11-12 all-star team, fresh off a 13-4 win over Washoe in the if needed game of the District 1 Tournament, will face Siverado Little League in the opening round of the Nevada State Championships Friday at 8 p.m. in Henderson.
In the other first-round game, Elko faces off against Cheyenne, which outscored its opponents 66-6 in three district contests.
The thrill of getting over the hump and beating Washoe in addition to qualifying for state has pretty much worn off, according to shortstop-pitcher Jace Keema.
“Just about,” Keema said before a recent practice at Governors Field. “When I see the all-star hat I know it’s real. That’s what we were shooting for was to beat Washoe and make it to state.”
It will be interesting to see how Carson handles itself. Certainly the Vegas teams figure to test Carson as much, if not more, than Washoe did. And, how will Carson handle the spotlight?
Keema said he expects to be a little nervous, but manager Kinkade DeJoseph said none of his players should be nervous.
“We shouldn’t be nervous,” DeJoseph said. “We’re not supposed to be here, but I’m sure there will be some butterflies. We’ll just lay it on the line and see how we do.”
Carson enters the tournament hitting a whopping .479 as a team. Of course it helps when you get 45 hits in the first two games like Carson did against Reno National and Reno American. Carson hit .355 in the two games against Washoe, which is probably closer to the pitching it will see in Vegas.
Unofficially, Bryce Moyle leads the way at .619 with nine RBIs, while Kyle Krebs is at .578 with 11 RBIs. Tez Allen is at .500 with five RBIs. Jayden DeJosph is at .450 with three RBIs and Keema is at .444 with eight RBI. Tommy Gall is at .421 with eight RBIs and Zach Simms is at .375 with five RBIs, including his clutch homer that tied the Washoe game at 4, setting hte stage for Carson’s improbable nine-run outburst in the seventh inning. And, Jesse Lopez (.583) and the diminutive Kyle Glanzman, the only 11-year-old on the team, is at .400.
Moyle has been the ideal table setter for Carson thus far. H is second on the team in hits, runs and RBIs.
“Every game it seems like he leads off (the first) with a hit and comes around to score,” DeJoseph said. “He’s done a good job of putting the ball in play. he’s going to make you work.
“At each stage the pitching gets tougher and tougher, and we have to deal with that.”
And, he has some pop in his bat as evidenced by his two-homer game against Washoe. Both round-trippers came in the decisive seventh inning.
Keema, Krebs, DeJoseph and Simms also have shown they can hit the long ball. There aren’t any easy outs in this batting order.
Keema believes it will come down to pitching and defense. He believes Carson has enough of both to win a championship.
Carson used just Keema, Krebs. Moyle, DeJoseph and Simms during the tournament. Allen can also throw as could lefty Jordan Anderson, according to the elder DeJoseph.
DeJoseph said he hasn’t totally decided on an opening game starter. but given that Moyle started the opener and the championship game, he’s probably a good bet to take the hill on Friday.