Even after suffering their most devastating loss of the All-Stars season, the 11-year olds of the Turlock American Little League came together one last time for breakfast on Tuesday morning. They didn’t necessarily spend all the time talking about the previous night’s 11-7 defeat to Visalia — which ended their Regional Championship tournament run in Lemoore on Monday night — but also discussed the possibility of linking up again next season, when they’re a year older.
“Everyone’s talking about what we’ll do next year,” manager Nick Pryschuk said.
Of course, it’s hard to determine what’s going to happen then. The fact is, it’s a year away. So the Turlock Americans can only look back at what they did the past few weeks, and take pleasure in being the last Turlock-area team to go.
Throughout the tournament, they relied heavily on their pitching and team defense. It worked well in every game, highlighted by a District 10 Championship after topping Riverpark on July 12. It also helped that the local team boasted 11 pitchers, giving them depth.
In the regional tournament, Turlock American had standout performances from numerous players.
Amazingly, Cameron Martin and Dylan Roberts each homered in all three games, as the Turlock Americans went 1-3. Timothy Harmon provided the catching, Dylan Roberts and Mitchell Pryschuk produced a number of outstanding outfield catches, their coach said, and the deep pitching staff gave the team a chance every time.
However, Turlock American suffered a tough 12-11 loss in extra innings to Morada (of Stockton) in the regional opener before the players and coaches redeemed themselves with a 13-1 thumping in 3 1/2 innings over High Sierra (of Sonora) that saw 21 hits by the winning the team. That game lasted just 45 minutes.
Against Visalia, Turlock American left 16 runners on base and just couldn’t pull through. The team also committed about a half dozen errors.
But it didn’t stop the Turlock Americans from meeting up one last time on Tuesday morning.
Pryschuk thanked his players and sponsors, as well as the families that traveled with them to Lemoore to show support.
“The whole experience was good,” Pryschuk said. “Our kids and our families that went bonded well together. We had a bunch of fun. It was a real team atmosphere. It was a pretty sad ending. We were upset because we thought we were the best team out there. Even Morada thought we were the best team out there.”
To contact Chhun Sun, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 634-9141 ext. 2041.