It was two up and two down for the Turlock National Little League 10-year-old All-Stars who saw their season come to a conclusion after Tuesday’s 12-2 mercy-rule loss to Atwater in the consolation bracket of the District 73 Tournament from Los Banos.
“We had a few kids on TOCs for AAA and for the Dodgers as well, and I think the level of play was all even and just a high level. All the kids came out trying their best and gave it their all, great group of kids who gave it their all,” said Turlock head coach Jeff Naranjo.
The National side was coming off their first loss to Los Banos on Monday after dropping the game, 15-4.
They were then scheduled to face Atwater in a win or go home contest on Tuesday where the weather soared to 103 degrees or hotter on the playing field.
“It was 103 today, just really hot and most of these kids are 10 years old, so I commend them for that. I am happy they came out and had fun and did all they could. Real happy and proud and we will try again next year,” said Naranjo.
The National side also had to battle various contentious calls that led to multiple errors and unearned runs allowed through the short game.
“It was a really closer game than the score says, especially early on, but a lot of errors and especially that first game as well, a lot of errors,” said Naranjo.
Heading into the second inning, Atwater took a quick 2-0 lead on starting pitcher Scout Silva.
This led to one of just two runs scored by the National side after Julian Valencia hit a hard RBI single into the outfield to make it 2-1 with one out.
The tying run was left on base and that would be one of just scoring rallies for the game.
Atwater added five runs in the bottom of the second and then two more in the third to take a 9-1 lead heading into the fourth.
In the top of the fourth, the National side added one more run when Xavier Cantu hit an RBI double to right field, which made it 9-2.
Three runs were scored in the bottom of the fourth with two outs as they got the 12th run on a sacrifice to end the game.
“The kids seemed to come out a little nervous since we had five kids who we moved up from AAA; they tried their best and gave it their all,” said Naranjo.