11U finish third at state

Published 11:29 pm Tuesday, July 15, 2008

GRAND BAY — The Demopolis Cal Ripken 11U All-Star Team pushed a heavily favored Coosa squad to extra innings before succumbing 4-3 in the semi-finals of the state tournament Tuesday.

“Everybody here at the park was talking about our game and how good it was,” Demopolis head coach Derek Moody said.

His team went 3-1 in pool play before earning a date with Coosa, whose 9U, 11U and 12U teams each won their respective age divisions.

Tripp Perry anchored the Demopolis performance on the mound, pitching six stellar innings.

“He had really great pitch location,” Moody said of Perry’s effort. “We just curveballed them to death.”

Perry was able to keep the Coosa lineup off balance, allowing only five hits and three runs over six innings of work.

Ryan Schroeder helped preserve the tie in a clutch situation by fielding a groundball deep in the hole at shortstop and firing home to retire what would have been the go-ahead run.

“Everybody contributed. It was just a great group of kids,” Moody said. “They gave 110 percent everyday.”

The game ended in the seventh after Coosa fouled off two straight strikes with a full count to rope a two-out single that scored the wininng run.

Schroeder, Wil Stephens and Joseph Wilson each scored runs in teh game.

“They have a taste of what championship baseball is all about. The next time they get the chance to come to a tournament like this, they’re going to be ready,” Moody said.

Coosa went on to defeat Childersburg 3-2 to claim the state title. Demopolis allowed less runs than any team in the final four, earning a third place finish.