CARY, N.C. – Southwest Stars scored two or more runs in three of the first four innings en route to an 8-2 victory over Southwest Stripes to take gold at the 11U National Team Identification Series (NTIS) Champions Cup at Thomas Brooks Park in Cary, North Carolina.
The Southwest region has now won four titles at the 11U event in the last five editions. Additionally, it is the region’s 10th gold medal in the history of the NTIS Champions Cup.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- Southwest Stars took a 3-0 lead in the first inning on a wild pitch, stolen base, and RBI single by Ruben Elias.
- Southwest Stars extended its lead to 5-0 in the third inning. Jovan Lamas reached on a one-out double and scored on a Southwest Stripes error, then Bronx Holbron scored on Luke Upton’s RBI single to left field after reaching on a single and stealing second.
- In the fourth, Southwest Stars made it 7-0 thanks to run-scoring singles by Cooper Hutton and Jaxon Anderson.
- Southwest Stripes got on the board in the sixth with its only two runs of the contest. After a one-out single, hit-by-pitch, and double steal put runners in scoring position, a Leonardo Villalobos RBI groundout followed by a Joshua Park RBI single to the shortstop brought the runners across.
- Southwest Stars added insurance in the seventh when Holbron drove in Anderson with a double to left field after he started the inning with a double of his own.
- Anderson led all players with a 3-for-4 outing at the plate, while Lamas, Holbron, and Elias all tallied two hits apiece.
- Seven different players across the two teams recorded an RBI.
- Southwest Stars’ Elias tossed six strong innings and surrendered just two earned runs on three hits to earn the win.