By MICHAEL CHILDERS, CJ Correspondent
The Somerset-Pulaski County 13 YO All-Stars are the kings of the Bluegrass State.
After going 4-1 in this past weekend’s East Kentucky 13 YO Babe Ruth State Tournament at Lexington’s Shillito Park, Somerset-Pulaski is the 2013 state champions.
Somerset-Pulaski opened the tournament with three straight victories before losing their only game of it on Sunday. The first victim of the state championship journey was Southeastern, who fell to Somerset-Pulaski by a score of 2-0.
The next victory for Somerset-Pulaski came against Russell County, where the final score was 15-6. Later on, Somerset-Pulaski went on to defeat South Lexington by a score of 6-4.
On Sunday afternoon, it was a battle between South Lexington and Somerset-Pulaski. Game one saw South Lexington beat Somerset-Pulaski, 15-8, which was Somerset-Pulaski’s first and only loss of the tournament.
Following the seven-run loss to South Lexington, Somerset-Pulaski bounced back in a big way, taking South Lexington down by 11 runs at 12-1. With that victory, Somerset-Pulaski earned the state championship.
John David Nelson had himself a big tournament at the plate, finishing fifth overall in the hitting categories. Nelson, who finished with a batting average of .526, had a tournament-high 10 hits, four RBI’s, and three doubles.
Chase Madden and Nelson both tallied a tourney-high eight runs scored. Chance Stayton led all players in the tournament with 6 RBI’s.
Chase Walker’s performance in his outings made him one of the top pitchers in the state tournament. Walker, who pitched a total of 11.2 innings, went 2-1, had an ERA of 3.60, gave up seven hits, and had seven strikeouts.
Members of the championship team are: Chase Walker, Chance Stayton, John David Nelson, Lucas Wesley, Seth Bennett, Chase Madden, Stephen Burrell, Trevor Andrus, Caleb Wonn, Collin Hartmann, Walker Hancock, and Parker Begley.
Somerset-Pulaski Babe Ruth
LEXINGTON - In the East Kentucky 14 YO Babe Ruth State Tournament at Lexington’s Veterans Park, the Somerset-Pulaski 14 YO All-Stars will look to earn a state title of their own on Monday night.
On Saturday, Somerset-Pulaski suffered their first loss of the tournament to South Lexington, who won the game by one run at 10-9. Somerset-Pulaski bounced back on Sunday afternoon with a pair of victories over Russell County and South Lexington to earn a spot in Monday evening’s championship tilt.
In game one Sunday, Russell County jumped out an early, 3-0 lead over Somerset-Pulaski. However, Somerset-Pulaski roared back with 12 unanswered runs to come away with a 12-3 victory over Russell County.
Hagan Elmore went the entire distance for Somerset-Pulaski, giving up three runs on five hits in seven innings. Elmore struck out six Russell County batters in the nine-run win.
Nathanael Bell led the way for Somerset-Pulaski at the dish, finishing with three hits and four RBI’s. Trae Harmon chimed in with two hits of his own.
Somerset-Pulaski had to fight for their lives in game two of the afternoon against South Lexington, who led 6-4 after five innings in the books. After falling behind, Somerset-Pulaski scored four runs over the course of the next two innings to win by a lone run at 8-7.
To get the victory, Somerset-Pulaski broke a 7-7 tie in the bottom of the seventh frame to advance to the title game of the tournament. To get the winning run, Elmore scored on a bunt from Harmon.
Bell, once again, led the way for the local all-star team with three hits and two RBI’s. Elmore finished the contest with two hits and RBI to boot.
Brandon Pruitt, who pitched the final five innings, won the game for Somerset-Pulaski. In five innings of work Pruitt gave up a lone run on two hits and had four strikeouts.