First game of the tournament was against the Utah Grays. It was a close battle, being tied after three innings, then the Lightning bats heated up and countered with 6 runs to break it open. Jameson was the starting pitcher and gave 3 strong innings on the mound, while Rocco came in and earned the save. Final score of the game was 13-6 Lightning winners. Jake, Rocco, and Mason each had 2 hits.
Gwynn Baseball was the next opponent in the tournament, creating a challenge right away with a dominant arm against the 9u Lightning. It was difficult to scratch any runs early and had to continue to play solid defense until something could break through. That breakthrough came when the 9u Lighting posted 4 run 4th and a 3 run 5th inning to open the game. Jake went 3-3 and Ridge scored 3 runs to lead the offense. Alex pitched phenomenal on the mound, his longest outing of the year pitching 3 innings with 5 k's. Jake closed the game out with 3 quick innings of his own.
Onto the next day the 9u Lightning were matched up against the Team Texas. The 9u Lightning wasted no time and jumped on Team Texas with 9 runs in the first two innings. Marco, Bryson, Jameson, and Vincent each had two strikeouts on the mound and limited the opposition to only 5 hits and 3 earned runs over the game. Some late defensive miscues made the score a little closer and the final resulted in a 14-11 victory for the Lightning. Alex, Jameson, and Bryson each had 2 hits. Vincent and Marco each drove in 2 runs.
Game 4 of pool play was against the Central Valley Cardinals. The Lightning cruised to a 19-7 victory with patient hitters and smart base running. All Lightning players contributed on offense and scored a run. Mason and Ridge combined to go 4 innings and only give up 2 earned runs. Jameson led the offense by going 3-3. Alex, Mason, Vincent, and Jameson each had 2 rbi’s.
With pool play complete the 9u Lightning won their pool, set to play the Pool C winners, West Coast Federals. The opposition jumped out early with a 5 run first. The 9u Lightning battled back and made it a game 6-4 after 2, but the Federal's consistent play was too much for the Lightning on this day as they fell 16-8. Rocco and Alex each had extra base hits for Lightning. Micah had 2 hits in the game.
A strong overall performance for the 9u Lightning team in the 2018 DFC tournament. The opposing arms and talent were a great test for the players to compete against. It was another great weekend and look forward to seeing the group continue to progress when competing in the next tournament.