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Texas Rockies 11U claim runner-up finish in H4P's Dog Days tournament

By TR Baseball, 03/31/19, 7:15AM CDT

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PLANO - The Texas Rockies 11U baseball team wrapped up its second event of the spring with a 4-1 record and a runner-up finish in the H4P's Dog Days tournament in Plano, Texas.

The tournament attracted seventy three teams across seven total age divisions and classifications and followed a typical USSSA format: two game pool play schedule on Saturday then seeded based on record and average runs allowed serving as a tiebreaker metric into a single elimination bracket that would be played on Sunday in order to crown a champion.  The Rockies began the two-day event on Saturday by registering consecutive blowout victories over the NTX Elite (10-3) and the DFW Express (11-4) to sweep the team's pool play schedule.  At the conclusion of Saturday's games, the Rockies' 2-0 record and 3.50 average runs allowed slotted the ball club as the third seed and clinched a first-round bye heading into Sunday's single elimination bracket.

After awaiting the winner of the "6 vs. 11" matchup to open the tournament's second day of action, the Rockies claimed its first bracket play win of the season by prevailing 7-5 versus the Texas Edge.  The Rockies' win in the bracket opener sent the ball club into the tournament's semifinal game to meet Bison Baseball, where they would knock off the seventh seed with an 8-5 victory to claim a shot at the H4P's Dog Days championship title.  On Sunday evening finding themselves one-win shy of capturing their first championship title of the 2019 season, the Rockies found themselves fighting tooth and nail with the Next Level Bulls in a tightly contested six inning affair.  Neither team could manage to hang onto a lead early throughout the contest as the championship battle was highlighted by three lead changes over the first four innings of play.  Unfortunately for the Rockies, the Bulls would plate the game's final five runs over the final two frames to win the H4P's Dog Days tournament championship title by a final of 7-3.

Despite falling short of claiming its first title of the spring, the Rockies finished its second event of the season with a 4-1 record and a runner-up finish.  The Rockies were led by a strong performance from their offense who accumulated a .374 batting average in its five games played in the tournament.  Cooper Kirby earned his first Offensive Player of the Week honor following an  8-for-12 at the plate that included one double, five RBI, and six runs scored.  Beau Jones, Charles Brewer, and Martin True also swung hot bats in the Rockies' lineup as each member of the trio concluded the weekend with five hits each.  While the Rockies' offense was busy putting runs up on the scoreboard, its hurlers continued to baffle opposing batters on the mound.  Right-handed pitcher Beau Jones was tabbed as the program's pitcher of the week by turning in two strong starts on the hill for the Rockies.  In his two appearances, Jones allowed three earned runs on eight base hits, walked four, and struck out nine to pick up his first two wins of the season.  Whit Turner and Cooper Kirby were also impressive in their outings and helped guide the Rockies' pitching staff to a 4.00 ERA in the tournament.  The success attained by the Rockies' young hurlers was accrued by the valiant efforts exhibited by the team's stout defense which was led by the organization's Defensive Player of the Week, Charles Brewer.  The Rockies' utility man was superb at the second base and shortstop positions where he recorded three assists, nine putouts, and one double play in fifteen total chances on the weekend.  Harrison Stiles, Cade Kirby, and Martin True also helped fortify a Texas Rockies 11U defense by showing exceptional glove work in the field to lead the ball club to a .856 fielding percentage across five games played in the H4P's Dog Days tournament.

The Texas Rockies 11U (4-3-1) will resume tournament play on April 13-14 where they will contend in the Global Slugger Spring Classic in Dallas, Texas.