Up and Down Week For Arizona Sunbelt Team
Team Arizona faced its share of ups and downs last week at the Junior Sunbelt Classic, but came home with a 4-3 record in one of the top baseball events of the summer.
With rain having inundated the area around McAlester, Oklahoma, the opening days games on Friday were all pushed back to later in the day.
Arizona opened the tournament with a 10-1 win over Oklahoma Gold, scoring 5 runs in the 4th and 4 more in the sixth for the 6 inning run rule victory.
Michael Brueser (Hamilton) was 2-4 with 2 doubles and a pair of RBIs.
Ryan Campos (Red Mountain) was 3-4 and Tyler Stone (Chaparral) drove in 2 runs.
Nathan Ward got the win on the hill, allowing only 2 hits and a solo run in 4 innings.
Seth Sweet-Chick and Cole Bramhall each tossed a scoreless inning of relief.
Game 2 against Texas did not begin until around midnight, but Team AZ did not let the start time affect them, taking a 10-2 win to move to 2-0 in the tourney.
Arizona broke open a tie game with a 5 run 5th inning.
Cade Verdusco (Corona del Sol), Drew Bond (Sunnyslope), and Kyle Stancato (Mountain Ridge) all had 2 RBIs.
Hamilton’s Brock Selvidge worked 4 innings on the bump for the win, allowing 4 hits and 2 runs.
Brock Peery (Mountain Ridge) closed things out with 2 scoreless frames, fanning 5 and allowing only 1 hit.
In game 3 Arizona continued its winning ways, taking down Team Canada 6-3.
Tyler Stone’s 3rd inning 2 run homer gave AZ the lead for good.
Corona del Sol’s David Utagawa tossed 5 2/3 innings, allowing 3 hits and 3 runs (2 of which were unearned).
Drew Bond worked 1 1/3 innings of scoreless ball for the save.
Arizona blanked Team Colorado 7-0 in game 4.
Selvidge and Stone each doubled and homered, with Selvidge driving in 3 runs and Stone 2.
Stancato was also 2-3 on the day.
On the mound it was Salpointe lefty Jaeden Swanberg getting the win with 4 1/3 innings of scoreless, 4 hit work.
Kolby Kmetko (Pinnacle) threw 1 2/3 scoreless and Bryan Webb (Corona del Sol) threw 1 shutout frame.
As is always the case in this tournament, the schedule for Arizona was backloaded heavily with the top teams in the event.
In game 5 AZ met up with a tough Missouri team and fell 9-1 to move to 4-1 in the tourney.
AZ could only muster 4 singles on the day.
Arizona got back on track in game 6, dropping Oklahoma Blue 8-2.
Ryan Campos doubled, tripled and drove in 2 runs to lead the way offensively.
Efrain Manzo (Chandler) was 2-2 and scored 3 runs.
Seth Sweet-Chick (Estrella Foothills) threw 6 innings with 6 Ks and allowed 5 hits to earn the W.
Arizona met up with Mississippi in game 7, always a tough team in this event.
AZ jumped up 2-0 in the 2nd on a 2 RBI single from Griffen Chewning (Notre Dame), but Mississippi plated 4 runs in the third and rolled to a 5-3 win.
In game 8 Arizona faced off with another of the tournament’s top teams, falling to Georgia 5-0.
AZ once again struggled with the bats.
Manzo and Verdsco each doubled and Stone had a single to account for Arizona’s 3 hits.
Meanwhile, Georgia hung a 5 spot in the 2nd inning to account for all the scoring.
Swanberg tossed 4 innings of scoreless ball in relief.
In game 9 AZ fell to Tennessee 6-4.
Verdusco, Stancato and Stone had RBIs for the good guys.
Nate Ward worked 2 2/3 scoreless innings in relief.
On the last day of the tournament Arizona took down Texas 12-4 for the second time in the tourney.
Campos had a 4-4 day at the plate with a double, an RBI and a run scored.
Manzo was 3-3 with 2 doubles, 2 RBIs and 2 runs scored and Wilson and Peery each had 2 hits.
Selvidge threw 2 scoreless innings to earn the win on the hill.
Campos was named to the All Tournament Team.
Arizona finished in 5th place with Mississippi winning the tournament.