For the second year in a row, a Little League baseball team from Kootenai County is headed to San Bernardino, Calif.
The Coeur d’Alene All-Stars captured the Idaho state Majors (age 11-12) championship Saturday at Croffoot Park in Hayden.
Coeur d’Alene defeated Nampa Valley 13-2 to win the best-of-three series. The night before, CdA rallied from a 7-1 deficit to win 8-7.
CdA (10-0) advances to the Northwest Regional and opens against Oregon on Aug. 3 at San Bernardino.
Anton Watson pitched the final inning in the 8-7 victory, striking out two. Then Watson started the second game, going five innings to register the win.
Kyle Manzardo drove in the winning run in the first game. In the second game, Watson had two homers and so did Kobe Sims, who pitched the final inning in the second game for the save.
Other team members are: Brandon Gay, Bridger Rinaldi, Zach Sensel, Bennett Cunningham, Colt Rowley, Cody Davenport, Connor Conigliaro, Zach Mackimmie and Logan Nosworthy. Former North Idaho College coach Paul Manzardo is the manager and he’s assisted by Chris Sensel and Kevin Rinaldi.
“They work extremely hard,” Manzardo said. “They’re very cohesive. Most of all, in regards to youth sports, the parents get along really well. We’re not dealing with the drama that a lot of other teams deal with.”
• As you read this, the Boundary County All-Stars baseball team from Bonners Ferry is in the middle of the Little League 50-70 Intermediate Division baseball western regional tournament in Irvine, Calif.
Little League expanded this year, adding a division for 11- to 13-year-olds. The idea behind adding the division was to create an opportunity for youth to make a transition from Little League field dimensions to big-field dimensions.
Boundary County earned a trip to the national tournament by beating the North Boise All-Stars in a best-of-three series.
The western regional began Friday and continues pool play through Wednesday. The top two teams from two pools advance to bracket play to determine the regional champ.
Boundary County posted a 24-1 record in Little League play, winning a nine-team league title against two teams from Coeur d’Alene, one from Hayden, two from Post Falls and one from Newport. Including games in non-Little League tournaments, Boundary County took a 27-6 record to the western regionals.
Team members include Brady Bateman, Trey Slint, Jesse Dunham, Raul Rodriguez, Seth Bateman, Tyrone Larson, Kobe Norwood, Pacen Pluid, Anthony Bennett and Kendall Stone. They’re coached by Cal Bateman, Ted Slint and Jeff Bennett.
Eight of the boys are from Bonners Ferry. Slint and Larson are from Sandpoint. Boundary County needed a couple more boys to fill out their team and since Sandpoint didn’t offer the division they were allowed to join Boundary County, Cal Bateman said.
“We have accomplished a lot more this year than anyone could have expected,” Bateman said.
Chandler Rogers captured a Junior national championship at 170 pounds at the Cadet and Junior Greco championships in Fargo, N.D.
Rogers, who has given an oral commitment to join his brother, Jordan, at Oklahoma State University, went 11-0 at the tourney, culminating with a 7-0 win by technical fall in the first round over Jared Johnson of Kansas. Rogers knocked off former Greco Cadet national champ Patrick Coover of well-known Blair Academy in Pennsylvania with a pin in 21 seconds.
Two other area wrestlers placed in Cadet. They are Trevor Eicher (6th, 182) and Dalton Young (7th, 106).
Other area wrestlers who competed at Fargo and fared well but fell short of placing were: Blake Beard, Joe Grable, Sam Davis, Kevin McLean, Tate Orndorff, Logan Sundheim, Aaron Klauder, Trey Meyer and Malachi Thompson.
• University HS junior-to-be Tate Orndorff breezed into the final round of the Cadet Freestyle Nationals competition at 285 pounds with a slew of pins – five in all – before having that trend turned on him in the championship, being pinned by Jacob Marnin of Iowa in 3 minutes, 23 seconds.
In other freestyle action, Chandler Rogers cruised to wins – all by technical fall – in his first five matches at 170 pounds in the Junior Freestyle competition before being injured and having to withdraw from the event.
An offense that produced 55 runs and pitching and defense that yielded just 18 in five games helped Coeur d’Alene Crush ’98 to an unbeaten run to the Amateur Softball Association 14-U B Northwest Region 15 championship during the weekend at the Dwight Merkel Complex.
Kayla Patton (Lake City), who had to pick up the slack when Crush lost a pitcher to injury a month ago, scattered seven hits, and Missy Huddleston and Miranda Amos (both Coeur d’Alene High) led the offense in an 11-5 championship-game victory over Great Falls Select-Green. Huddleston was 3 for 4 and Amos 2 for 3 with three RBIs in the title game.
In the winners’ bracket final, Crush scored four runs in each of the first three innings in cruising to a 17-4 victory that knocked Select-Green into the losers’ bracket. The Montanans (5-2) then held off Spokane Crash ’99 5-4, earning a rematch with Crush for the title and relegating the losers to a third-place finish.
Crash (7-2), which lost its first game then went on a seven-game winning streak, defeated Spokane Stealth ’98 6-1 to gain the third-place game. Stealth (4-2) finished fourth.
Crush had lost early in the Idaho state 14-U tournament the previous weekend in Coeur d’Alene, and faced with a steady stream of loser-out games with only one pitcher, wound up fifth. Avoiding that losers-bracket fate in the regional, and having Patton “come up big,” were keys to winning the championship, said coach
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