|Written by Brian Bergner|
|Wednesday, 07 July 2010 08:00|
The Verde Valley Minors All-Stars [ages 9 to 10] stayed alive in their hopes of claiming a District 10 title Tuesday,
“I was getting worried there for a while but we pulled through and now it’s just one game for it all,” Verde Valley skipper Pete Kelly said on the field after the game Tuesday.
On June 30, Prescott beat Verde Valley 9-5 and laid in wait for the boys in black and red to defeat the Prescott Valley All-Stars on Friday, July 2, which they did by the final score of 14-6.
Since the District 10 Little League All-Star Tournament is double elimination, Verde Valley had to beat Prescott on Tuesday, and would have to beat them again tonight to be named champion.
At Jimmy Herridge Memorial Field in the Riverfront Park complex in Cottonwood, Verde Valley jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead on a big two-run home run by catcher Jose Pacheco in the top of the first inning.
Pacheco was 3-4 on the day with the home run, a double, three runs scored and three RBIs.
Not bad for a kid who doesn’t stand 5 feet tall and weighs about 80 pounds soaking wet.
After Verde Valley made it 5-1 in the top of the third inning, Prescott wasn’t going to go away easily and gave Verde Valley starting pitcher Tyler Kelly a difficult inning, scoring four runs to tie it, 5-5.
Kelly managed to work his way through the damage and go 5⅓ innings, allowing seven runs on seven hits while walking two and striking out one.
“I thought he did a great job. He threw strikes and almost gave us a complete game,” Pete Kelly said.
In the bottom of the fourth inning, Prescott scratched across two more runs to take a 7-6 lead, putting a little fear into the 100 or so Verde Valley fans in attendance Tuesday night.
In the top of the fifth inning, however, Pacheco doubled and Jake Schwisow doubled to score him and tie the game, 7-7, then Bryce Cramer grounded out to the pitcher, scoring Schwisow to give Verde Valley the lead, 8-7.
From that point on, Verde Valley would hold the lead and add three more in the top of the sixth including a gutsy squeeze play by Schwisow, scoring Josh Scalf and Pacheco to give Verde Valley an 11-7 lead.
In the bottom of the sixth, Kelly got one out before reaching his 85 pitch count limit and was removed to a standing ovation.
Schwisow took the ball from Kelly and pitched the final ⅔ of an inning while striking out one batter to secure the victory for Verde Valley.
Standouts at the plate for Verde Valley included Chaz Taylor who was 2-3 with a run scored while Schwisow was
The final game of the District 10 Little League All-Star Tournament is scheduled for Wednesday, July 7, at Riverfront Park.
Verde Valley will send Pacheco to the mound, their No. 2 starter, in an effort to earn itself a championship.
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