By TBS Staff Writer
Headed into the last of the 7th inning the Nogales Roadrunners from Arizona were leading the 13U Arizona Nitro by a score of 4-3. Three outs were left when Gerard Hernandez in the bottom of the seventh hit a 300-foot solo shot over the wall in the Angels stadium at Big League Dreams in Gilbert, Arizona. The fans went crazy! With the score tied team Nitro needed one more run to move on to the semi-finals.
The next batter flew out to left field. One down. The next batter Alex Verdugo got to first with a walk. He advanced to second on a fielder’s choice. Two down! The Roadrunners intentionally walked the next batter then changed pitchers as Alex Larson came to the plate for the Nitro. The Roadrunners felt confident with #29 Cesar Salazar on the mound. A tie would mean extra innings. Salazar brought the heat on the first pitch. Straight down the middle, unhittable and strike one! Larson fouled off the next pitch. Strike two! Two outs, plus one more strike, then overtime would begin. The next pitch was a strike in the zone and Larson launched a single into straight centerfield. Alex Verdugo rounded third and scored! Game over five to four! Nitro (AZ) advances to the semifinals to face the top ranked Chandler Reds (AZ).
The San Diego Stars by Pony (Ca.), and the Rawlings Elite (Ca.), will also face-off in the semis on Tuesday.
Statistics for the Nitro
Nano Burrough pitched the first five innings for the Nitro. Tyler Frost pitched the final two. Gerard Hernandez hit a game-tying home run in the bottom of the seventh.
Kobie Foppe was four for four with a double and two RBI’s. Alex Verdugo was two for three with a double, a walk, and the game’s winning run. Head coach “Jerry” told the boys he loved them and would never forget them or the great game they just won together because they played together like a real team should. Final Score: Arizona Nitro-5, Nogales Roadrunners-4