Victory Today Propels Rockledge Into History
By Ed Pierce // August 18, 2012
Junior League World Series Title On Line Today
TAYLOR, MICHIGAN – As 9-and 10-year-olds they won the Florida state title. As 11 and 12-year-olds they came within two games of advancing to the Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pa. Now as 13- and 14-year-olds the Rockledge All-Stars stand on the verge of history.
By defeating Oil Belt, Texas 11-5 on Friday night at Heritage Park in Michigan, Rockledge will play today for the Junior League Baseball World Series championship.
The game will be shown live nationally at 11 a.m. on ESPN 2 and should Rockledge prevail over Aruba, the teens from Central Brevard will have accomplished a feat others can only dream of – stand alone as the best Junior division baseball squad in the world.
Friday’s win over Oil Belt was the second time in a week Rockledge has beaten the Southwestern Regional champions.
It wasn’t easy. With the game tied at 5-5 after five innings of play, Rockledge exploded to score the last six runs of the game over the final two innings to seal the win.
Rockledge will play Aruba at 11 a.m. today for the Junior League Baseball World Series championship. The game will be televised live on ESPN 2.
Rockledge was able to load the bases with nobody out in the sixth inning on a walk, a single and an error. Trevor Payne then drove in Michael Hall on a single and Jackson Parker also singled to drive in Brady Martello. Before the inning was done Hall and Mason Studstill also crossed the plate for Rockledge which now led 9-5.
In the seventh inning Rockledge scored two more runs to claim an 11-5 victory and a berth in today’s championship game.
All told against Oil Belt, Mason Studstill was 3 for 4, with two runs scored and two RBIs. Drew Parrish, Michael Hall Hall and Gavin Spinneweber all had two hits each, with Parrish and Hall each scoring three runs.
Studstill came on to pitch in relief in the fifth inning and was awarded the victory.
So now there’s just one game left for Rockledge against a veteran Aruban squad that is comprised of many players from a team that competed in the Little League World Series in Williamsport a year ago.
And if Rockledge comes away with a win today, it will be the first time a Little League team from Brevard County has ever won an international World Series championship.
Playing for the Rockledge All-Stars are Drew Parrish; Kevin Clanton; Mason Studstill; Mike Hall; Gavin Spinneweber; Trevor Payne; Kasim Nabhan; Blake Beyel; Justin Robedeau; Brady Martello; and Jackson Parker.
Rockledge is managed by David Clanton. Team coaches are Robbie Robedeau, Tom Hall, Shane Parker and Dino Martello.
The dream ended Friday for the South Beaches/West Melbourne All-Stars in a seminfinal game at the Senior League Baseball World Series in Bangor, Maine.
Guatemala scored five runs in the third inning to erase a 1-0 South Beaches/West Melbourne lead and went on to claim a 5-2 semifinal victory.
Austin Alsept, Carson Jackson and River Horning pitched superbly for South Beaches/West Melbourne, but Guatemala’s overall team speed and patience at the plate was the difference in the game.
Cooper Christiano singled in the first inning against Guatemala, took second on a passed ball, stole third base and scored on a throwing error for South Beaches/West Melbourne’s early 1-0 lead.
Tyler Phillips tallied South Beaches/West Melbourne’s other run in the fifth inning on a wild pitch.
Given time to reflect on what they accomplished in the tournament in reaching the semifinals of the Senior League Baseball World Series matching the best teams in the world, players, coaches and fans of the team can be proud of what they were able to accomplish during a marvelous run at the title.
Playing for South Beaches are Austin Alsept, Carson Jackson, Gabriel Rodriguez, Miguel Rodriguez, Tyler Brennan, Cooper Christiano, River Horning, Joe Minkwitz, Reid Poltun, Chris Phillips, Kyle Starks, Taylor Yates, Jake Walsh, Matt Doran, Tyler Phillips and P.J. Robinson.
John Phillips is the South Beaches manager. John Christiano and Mike Alsept serve as team coaches.