The Tournament Trails for "4" of the "5" Babe Ruth and Cal Ripken baseball Wellington teams came to an end over the weekend and today (Monday). Only our 9 yo's remain on the slate as they travel to Garden City later this week for State Cal Ripken Tournament baseball action beginning Friday. First up, Council Grove at 1:30PM. On Saturday, the young lads will take on Winfield at 2:00PM and then on Sunday, July 23rd, the top 4 finishers from Friday and Saturday action will engage in single elimination bracket play. By sunset Sunday, a new 9U State Cal Ripken Champion will be crowned.
Wellington's other teams have all ran their course if you will and with mixed results. Our 15 yo's came so close but eventually finished as "State Runners-Up" at their Babe Ruth Tournament held in Peabody over the weekend, losing to Columbus in a championship nailbiter Monday 4-5. Too many errors lead to that eventual outcome according to Coach Jeff DeJarnett, after a very strong tournament performance up to that point. Wellington only left 4 base runners stranded to their opponent's 14 in the championship showdown! Both came into the final game with perfect tournament records. The boys in red just couldn't overcome the "9" errors, a task hard to overcome for any team. Congratulations to the group though, their coaches and their fans, Wellington was awarded the Sportsmanship Trophy which says a lot about the caliber and character of many. Great Job Wellington!! Both Columbus and Wellington were undefeated going in to today's Championship Final. Congratulations to Columbus for their victory and congratulations to Wellington for your State runner-up outcome and the coveted Sportsmanship Award. Congrats also to Zane Cornejo, named the WOW Award recipient and Gage Cunningham the MVP! That's awesome gentlemen!
Wellington's 10 yo's who have been on a roll since the end of regular season 2 or so weeks ago, ran into some tough competition as their State Cal Ripken Tournament played out at Harper, just 30 mins. to the west. A big win on Friday, the 10 yo's downed Cottonwood Valley 8-0 and then on Saturday won 9-5 over Lakin. It was Sunday's matchup vs Pittsburg (also undefeated) that the Winning Wagon Train threw a wheel and this solid group of young Wellington ball players suffered their first post season loss, falling to 7-1 overall - Pittsburg wins 9-1. The loss pitted Wellington against Liberal in today's single elimination bracket play. Coach Jimenez indicated the boys had a great game against Liberal but got themselves down and eventually lost. MVP honors went to James Redford, the WOW Award recipient was Dominic "The Duck" Jimenez. The good news through all of this you ask??? This group finished THIRD IN THE ENTIRE STATE OF KANSAS!! That's pretty dang good! Congrats - great effort...great future!!
Last but certainly not least, both of our 16-18 Sr. Babe Ruth squads battled hard at the 2017 Sr Babe Ruth State Tournament held right here in Wellington. The Top 4 teams from the 8 team field would eventually advance to single elimination bracket play on Sunday. Unfortunately, neither of Wellington's team won enough in pool play to do that Sunday thing. Walnut Ark Valley, made up mostly of Wellington boys went 0-3 in pool play and the Wellington Host team 1-2. The latter was just one win away from being in the top 4 final but it just wasn't meant to be. Junction City, Abilene, Cottonwood Valley and Liberal made that final cut, JC downed Abilene 13-0 and Liberal downed CVL 8-1 to meet up in the championship final. The final was a close one but Liberal pulled out an 8-7 victory over Junction City and will be the KANSAS representative at the Regional Tournament in Junction City later this week. As host team at Regional later this week, Junction City's loss to Liberal was not a season ending loss.
Good luck to our 9 yo's as they travel to Garden City - it's up to you guys now - get 'er done!!