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Turlock Little League all-stars impress in district tournaments
Turlock national juniors
The Turock National Juniors brought home District 73 championship (Photo contributed).

Turlock National Little League (TNLL) and Turlock American Little League (TALL) each had their four all-star teams compete over the course of the past two weeks at the District 73 tournaments. In the four age groups, the two Turlock leagues have won a total of three tournaments thus far.

The 10-year-old age group was the first tournament of the summer, which saw Turlock American take home the district crown.

The American All-Star 10s kicked off the tournament with a string of dominant victories. In their first game against Los Banos Little League, they cruised to a 14-3 win. While the opening game win was impressive, the TALL boys bested the performance in their next matchup against Mariposa County, who they beat by a score of 15-0.

Turlock American 10s
The Turlock American 10s brought home the District 73 championship.

The tournament did not come without any hurdles, though, as the boys suffered a 6-3 loss in their next game against Atwater. Luckily for Turlock, their previous performances still secured them a trip to the district final, a rematch against Atwater. This time around, TALL avenged their loss and were able to cruise to a 12-2, championship clinching win.

The American 10 all-stars will now compete in the Section 6 tournament, which starts on July 14.

An inter-city matchup kicked off the 11-year-old tournament when TALL met TNLL in the opening game. TALL continued their dominance in this particular age group as they exploded for an 18-3 win. Fortunately for TNLL, they were able to rebound with a 7-3 victory over Yosemite.

Meanwhile, TALL also grabbed a victory in their second tournament game with an 8-5 win over Los Banos. The road to victory against LB was not the smoothest as they faced a 2-4 deficit late in the game.

After the loss, Los Banos turned their focus to their third-round matchup against TNLL. The LB squad played with a chip on their shoulder and ultimately walked away victorious, thus ending the TNLL 11s’ season.

On the other side of the bracket, TALL rode the momentum of their comeback win to beat Atwater by a score of 12-2 in only 5 innings. Turlock’s Baryn Fowlkes hit a grand slam to deep center to set the tone and lead the team to victory.

Turlock American 11s
The Turlock American 11s brought home the District 73 championship.

In the championship game, they once again faced Atwater. Turlock was led by starting pitcher Drew Vercammen, who tossed a complete game in TALL’s 5-2 victory. Like the 10s, the TALL 11s will now prepare for the section tournament that begins on July 14.

With TALL taking home the first two tournaments of the summer, the TNLL Juniors were motivated to get their league in the title picture, and that’s exactly what they did.

In the second round, TNLL and TALL faced off with ticket to the championship game on the line. The back-and-forth contest was not decided until the very last pitch of the game when TNLL’s JJ Gutierrez recovered a passed ball and made a diving tag at home for the final out, securing his team a 4-3 win.

Following the loss, TALL kept their championship hopes alive by putting on a dominant performance against Atwater while facing elimination. The 16-4 offensive explosion earned them another shot at TNLL in the championship game.

In the crosstown rematch, fans were treated to another tight game. In yet another instance where TALL threatened to tie the game in the latter innings, TNLL’s defense and pitching held up as they were able to secure a 4-2 win and punch their tickets to the section playoffs, also starting on July 14.

After the conclusion of the Junior tournament, there is only one age group to settle: the 12s.

In the opening game, it was once again a battle of Turlock between TNLL and TALL, which saw the American League squad bring home a 10-0 win.

In the second round, TALL continued their dominance with a 10-3 win over Yosemite. They will continue to battle for the 12s district title when they take on Los Banos on July 6.

Turlock American 12s
The Turlock American 12s will continue to battle for the district title when they take on Los Banos on July 6.