Pinto Red Sox, Mustang Tigers and Bronco Yankees Are Champs
By STEVE GALLUZZO | Sports Editor
Another exciting season of action in the Pacific Palisades Baseball Association culminated in dramatic endings last week at the Palisades Recreation Center’s Field of Dreams.
The first team to be crowned champion this spring was the Red Sox, who won the Pinto Division title over the Orioles, 12-11, last Tuesday on a walkoff hit by Lucca Hawkins. It capped off a perfect playoff run for the Red Sox, who beat the Yankees, Orioles and Pirates to emerge from the winner’s bracket.
Coah David Haynie was proud of his team for scoring four runs in its last at-bat to clinch the championship: “The Orioles played a great game! Their defense made it very hard for us, but we’ve been coming back all year. We probably had about eight of these games where we came back from two, three, four, five, six runs down in the last inning. It’s all about the kids, they never gave up. We have great great kids.”
Hawkins was the hero but had lots of help from his friends: Stowe Campbell, Grey Epstein, Gus Gaunt, Luke Gillette, Elloit Gottlieb, Zack Haynie, William Hill, Harper Holt, Teddy Peterson, Connor West and Henry Wyman.
The Mustang Division came down to the Tigers and Orioles and the Tigers prevailed. Coach David Ludwig’s squad was solid all season long, winning 11 of 14 games in the regular season and going 5-1 in the playoffs.
“We had a great team of kids who loved playing together, worked really hard, improved every day and in the end they were able to put it all together and win the championship,” Coach Ludwig said. “It was a really amazing time.”
The triumphant Mustang Tigers consisted of Rhett Bowen, Parker Gallup, Mario Knapp Schwarzenegger, Becker Ludwig, Milo Mastantuono, Sam Merrill, Jack Prokop, Christian Reynolds, Sebastian Rood, Jace Roshan, Charlie Smolinisky and Nash Tyler.
Thursday’s Bronco Division decider was a nail-biter to the final out, but the Yankees held off the Pirates on a saving catch by right fielder Lukas Lin. The Pirates won 8-7 the day before.
“We were underdogs all season, every time we got knocked down we came back strong and we did it again this time,” Yankees Coach Troy Miller said. “Everyone made it work today.”
The Yankees’ roster was made up of Lin, Francis Conners-Schmid, Grey Elliott, Andrew Holland, Ryan Freeman, Oliver Houghton, Lila Owens, Cole Miller, Malek Shamonki, Walter Sibson and Thomas Villante.
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