They did it. The Turlock American 10-year-old All Star team are the District 73 champions after closing out the tournament strong on Thursday night from Soderquist Park over Atwater in a game that went all six innings, despite a late double-digit lead.
With a 10-plus run lead by the end of the fifth, the American side continued to push forward and pulled off a 14-6 win behind a strong effort from the entire lineup from top to bottom.
“They were celebrating. Just everything going your way doesn't build character, sometimes adversity does,” said Turlock American head coach Todd Feldman. “They needed a bit of a challenge so it was good for them.”
The 10s cap off the tournament having won three straight, outscoring their opponents 45-11.
This year's squad consists of Joe Farinha, Lincoln Hart, Garrett Shamgochian, Dutch Lawrence, Nick Feldman, Kaeden Patterson, Xavier Ruezga, Vincent Gonzales, Max Mankins, Jaron Rocha, Noah Garcia and Seth Salabor.
“Every single kid on the team got a hit for the tournament and every kid got to start at least one game in the tournament,” said Feldman. “We started every kid, so we played as a team, which doesn’t always happen in All Stars, but it was great because we won as a team.”
Mankins added the American’s first run in the top of the first inning after drilling an RBI single to go up by a run.
Salabor followed up with a crushing two-run double in the third to make it 3-0 before the team just went off.
The score read 6-1 by the end of the fourth and then the fifth inning saw a seven-run rally to extend the lead to 13-1.
Five runs were added by Atwater in the bottom half, which made the score 13-6 by the start of the sixth.
Farinha tossed four innings, allowing just one run. Lawrence closed out the game, pitching two shutout innings.
“We got a little flustered in the fifth, mixture of hits, walks and runs and then we had to put Dutch in to settle them down and shut them out,” said Feldman. “After the fifth, the playoff atmosphere really took over them because they hadn’t been challenged as much, and took a little to get them down. Glad it happened because it will happen at the next level.”
Sections is next for the District 73 10-year-old champs against an opponent and time yet to be determined in Stockton on July 15.