By Don Chipman
The five-team 11-12 year old Little League state tournament got underway here in Beardstown at the Little League diamond at Schmodt Park last Wednesday.
The five teams in the state finals were: Bradley Bourbonnais, Tuscola, Western Springs, Jackie Robinson West and Tri-Cities.
Bourbonnais and Tuscola kicked off the tourney with Bourbonnais slipping past Tuscola 8-6. Bradley Bourbonnais rallied from a 6-2 deficit with a six run outburst in the top of the sixth for the come-from-behind win.
J. Develder with a pair of doubles and two RBI’s was the big stick for the winners. Bourbonnais outhit Tuscola 11-7 in the win.
In game one on Thursday, Tri-Cities won out over Jackie Robinson West in a close 9-7 decision. Tri-Cities led 5-3 after three innings. JRW scored one run in the bottom of the sixth but the rally fell short. Tri-Cities had home runs from Luke Lauder and L. Oreskovich, with Oreskovich’s home run coming with two onboard in the three-run third. Carr had a two-run blast for JRW in the first.
In game two Thursday, Bourbonnais shut out Western Springs by a 3-0 final. A. Weedon, S. O’Connor and T. Kunz combined for a two-hit shutout with Weedon the winning hurler. J. Develder cranked out a solo home run, and Weedon went 3-for-4 with a triple and two RBI’s.
Although JRW lost the contest 6-4 to Tri-Cities, they out hit them 9-7. Tri-Cities blasted two home runs, while JRW nailed one round tripper.
The Friday game was rained out with the double elimination tournament pushed up one extra day.
In game one Saturday, Jackie Robinson West defeated Tuscola in a 17-11 slugfest that saw 21-hits registered in the game with JRW sending Tuscola home with their second loss in the tourney.
C. Carr was the leading hitter for JRW, blasting out his second home run of the tournament while going 3-for-4 with three RBI’s. M. Garrett also went 3-for-4 with a triple and three ribbies. C. Ochs led Tuscola with four RBI’s.
In game two Saturday, Bourbonnais sneaked past Tri-Cities by an 8-7 count, with a Tri-Cities rally in the top of the sixth, falling just short. The win propelled Bourbonnais into the championship contest slated for Tuesday.
The game was tied at 3-3 after two innings, with Bourbonnais taking a 5-3 lead after three. Tri-Cities tied it at 5-5 with two runs in the top of the fourth, but Bourbonnais tacked on three in the bottom of the inning to lead 8-5. Tri-Cities scored two in the top of the sixth but fell short by the 8-7 final.
T. Kunz had a two-run round tripper for Tri-Cities, and knocked in four runs. T. Laffin went 3-for-4 for the winners with a pair of RBI’s. Bourbonnais collected five hits in the well-played contest, while Western Springs managed only two hits in the losing effort. Tri-Cities out hit Bourbonnais 11-6 in the loss coming up just short on the wrong end of the 8-7 final verdict.
Jackie Robinson West used a huge eight-run third inning to post an 11-5 win over Western Springs, sending the losers home. JRW pounded out 14 hits in the winning effort.
M. Wright with a pair of dingers, and L. Elion with one round tripper, sparked JRW to the 11-5 win. Both Elion and Wright had three RBI’s for the winners. E. Steensma had a double and two ribbies in the losing cause for Western Springs. JRW banged out 14-hits in the winning effort while Western Springs collected five hits.