Manchester takes 10U baseball tourney title

The SHBL baseball tournament ended with a show of sportsmanship as the two combatants, Manchester and North Adams, posed together for a group picture, another good lesson for all. (Photo by Mark Carpenter)

Hounds top North Adams 5-2 in championship tilt – 

By Mark Carpenter – 

The Southern Hills Youth Baseball League 10U tournament title was on the line on July 18 in Manchester as the host Greyhounds faced off with North Adams in the tourney’s championship contest. The Hounds sat in the driver’s seat, having no losses on the brackets, while the young Devils were trying to make their way out of the loser’s bracket needing two wins to claim the crown.

But alas, the night belonged to the host team as Coach Mathias Applegate’s Manchester squad took care of business and finished off a one-loss season with an SHYBL tournament championship, downing the Devils by a final score of 5-2.

With North Adams second baseman Dalton Pence fielding the throw from the catcher, Manchester’s Joel Blythe slides into second with a stolen base in the second inning of last week’s 10U tournament championship game, won by the Greyhounds 5-2. (Photo by Mark Carpenter)

The Hounds struck first and never trailed after pitcher Luke Applegate retired North Adams in order in the top of the first. In the bottom half, Manchester scored twice after Devils’ pitcher Carsyn Raines struck out the first two hitters. Applegate reached on an error and advanced on an infield hit by Braylon Ricketts. Both runners came around to plate a pair of unearned runs when Hunter Raines reached on a throwing error and the hosts had an early 2-0 advantage.

In the top of the second, Raines led off with a base hit for the Devils and moved around to third, but was left stranded, the same fate that befell Manchester’s Joel Blythe in the bottom half of the inning. In the top of the third, Ricketts took the mound for the Greyhounds and allowed just a two-out base hit to Brad Rhoden and the Manchester offense went to work in their half of the third.

With one out, Corey Gray earned the “Little League Home Run” as his base hit was followed by North Adams miscues that allowed Gray to go all the way around the bases to make it 3-0. Applegate followed with a base hit to left, but was erased at second on a fielder’s choice off the bat of Ricketts. Ricketts stole second and third, then came across on an infield hit by Raines, who scored on a base hit to left by Elijah Crabtree to give the Hounds a commanding 5-0 lead after three.

With North Adams’ Cooper Roush, right, covering, Manchester’s Corey Gray makes it safely into third base during action from last week’s 10U tourney title game. (Photo by Mark Carpenter)

The Devils did rebound in the top of the fourth, slicing two runs off of the Manchester advantage. Colin Tolle led off with an infield hit, followed by a base hit up the middle off the bat of Raines. After the next two batters struck out, a base hit to right center by Cooper Roush drove both runners home and put North Adams on the board, as they now trailed 5-2.

Devils’ reliever Cash Hupp struck out the side in the bottom of the fourth, giving the Devils one last at-bat to make up a three-run deficit. Applegate returned to the mound and made sure that didn’t happen, striking out Dmari Hiser, Rhoden, and Hupp in order and the Hounds could celebrate a tournament championship on their home turf.

The victorious Greyhounds sported a lineup that included: Parker Hayslip, Corey Gray, Luke Applegate, Braylon Ricketts, Hunter Raines, Elijah Crabtree, Landen Doyle, Ryan Butcher, Joel Blythe, and Karter Beaver.

The runner-up Devils’ roster included: Brad Rhoden, Cash Hupp, Colin Tolle, Carsyn Raines, Dalton Pence, Thaddeus Moore, Cooper Roush, Brayden Hodge, Gage Wilson, Chris Hall, Dmari Hiser, and Hunton Shiveley.