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Nationals 12s fall in semifinal to Atwater
National 12s
Brian Teague of the Turlock National 12-year-olds finished Tuesdays game with 81 pitches thrown and allowed just four runs. - photo by EDDIE RUIZ/The Journal

Once the first game of the District 73 All-Star Tournament concluded, the Turlock National 12-year-old squad was on the losing end, but they didn’t let that stop their season. Instead the National squad went into the loser’s bracket and won back-to-back games, setting up the semifinal contest with Atwater on Tuesday afternoon from Julien field.

With the score reading 1-0 for the majority of the game, the National squad with starting pitcher Brian Teague fended off the Atwater squad until the closing innings when the visiting team extended the lead and held on for the 5-2 win.

“It was a satisfying tournament since we made it farther than we have with this team,” said Turlock National head coach Matt Day. “The 11-year olds last year were 0-2, this year we won two, they played better baseball, so I am happy with them.”

Following Friday’s loss to Mariposa, the National squad, anchored by Ali Camren, rolled through Yosemite 11-7 on Sunday.

“I mean Ali just killed the ball that night on Sunday,” said Day.

The win was followed with another victory, this time over Mariposa, where they redeemed themselves with a 5-3 win.

“It was redemption time for us, just a great game and we were confident as well,” said Day.

On Tuesday, the National side looked for a rally after the fourth inning, trailing 3-0.

With two runners on and two outs, Camren came through for her team after blasting a hard RBI single to the right field fence to cut the lead to 3-1.

Unfortunately, multiple runners were left on base and just a run was added.

Atwater scored two more runs in the bottom of the fifth to go up 5-1.

Ernesto Marquez scored on a pass ball for the second run in the top of the sixth, but the game ended with a strikeout.

“Just a couple hits short, we had opportunities just didn’t get there,” said Day. “I am very proud of the team, I would have liked to have made it further. I thought Brian Teague big hits and a lot to be proud of.

“We had bases loaded with an opportunity with the middle of the lineup and I just think we missed an opportunity and it happens,” Day added.