Pirates claim league championship
Logan Pruski, Kai Watters, Jamie Hogarth, Rocky Hogarth, Jackson Kahl, Mateo Morales, Tadgh Geary, Evan Loring, Joey Panelli, Micah Ivens, Teige Wright, Armand Baldwin.
Bat Boy — Dax Watters
Manager — Craig Pruski
Coaches — Bill Watters, Tom Hogarth, Alan Nicholls, Greg Loring
Over the past few years, youth baseball players from Truckee have been heading to Reno to compete in leagues and tournaments, where a core group of youngsters have continuously brought home championship titles.
On Friday, May 26, the team continued that trend as they capped off a run through the South Reno Babe Ruth League’s 13- and 15-year-old division with a pair of extra-inning victories to win the league championship.
The South Reno Pirates were comprised of players from Truckee and competed against seven Reno-area teams over the course of a regular season and postseason tournament.
After rolling to a 9-3-2 record during the regular season, the Pirates entered the double-elimination postseason tournament as the No. 3 seed.
The team opened tournament play on Saturday, May 20, at Jack Tighe Baseball Field in Reno, and took a 6-2 win over the No. 6 seeded Cardinals.
The Pirates would then face the No. 2 seeded Royals in the next round, and suffered a 10-1 loss behind several errors in the field, dropping the team into the loser’s bracket.
“We just gave up too many outs in that game,” Manager Craig Pruski said. “They had a guy pitch really well for them too.”
Entering their next game in a must-win situation, the Pirates rebounded with a 19-3 victory over the Mariners on Tuesday, May 23.
The Pirates then went on to knock the Cardinals out of tournament contention with a 14-2 victory the following day.
The team then took on the No. 1 seeded Reds on Thursday, May 25, and pounded out 22 runs as they picked up the victory to set up a rematch against the Royals.
“We just took it one game at a time,” said Pruski of the team’s mindset while going through the loser’s bracket. “We knew we could still win the championship, which was our goal. We played (each game) so we could play tomorrow.”
The Royals came into the game against the Pirates having gone 3-0 through the tournament and were a win away from capturing the championship, while the Pirates would have to beat the Royals twice to capture the title.
The team’s met on Friday, May 26, and after falling behind in the game, the Pirates managed to rally to force extra innings. The Pirates then went on to take a 10-7 victory in the eighth inning to force a second game.
The teams returned to the field immediately after the first game, and once again the squads battled to a tie after seven innings of play.
In the eighth inning, the Pirates pushed across a trio of runs to take a 9-6 win and the league title.
The Pirates managed to take the league championship this season while playing without any 15 year olds on their roster. The team also had one player who was 12 years old.
The win follows up the squad’s championship run during the fall season, and according to Pruski is part of lengthy list of titles over the past few years from the team’s core group of players.
“It’s all revolved around having good players and having good parents trying to help the betterment of the team,” Pruski said of the team’s success.