La Verne 11-Year-Old All-Stars Take Care of Business, Prepare for Tuesday Showdown with San Dimas

July 1, 2011
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Tommy Delgado squares one up for La Verne.

Tommy Delgado squares one up for La Verne.

The La Verne 11-year-old all-stars followed up their 17-3 opening tournament win with a 16-4 victory over Glendora American on Thursday at Pelota Park in La Verne. Again, it was a complete team triumph, showing off La Verne’s balanced attack of clutch hitting, pitching and defense.

“Top to bottom, one through 13, our guys stay in the game and are ready to play,” said Manager Mike Kurnick. “When I call on them they’re ready to go.”

Kurnick gave the ball to Joe DeFina to start, and he did a great job limiting Glendora American to just two runs through the first two innings. Meanwhile, DeFina also spanked a first inning double to drive in Tommy Delgado and Johnny Martinez. DeFina also came in on an overthrow at third base to put La Verne up 3-0. Glendora got one back in the bottom of the first.

In the top of the second, La Verne tacked on two more runs on singles by Griffin Mulvey and Delgado and a double by Luke Russell. Again, Glendora answered with a single run in the bottom of the second to trail 5-2.

After La Verne failed to score in the top of the third, Glendora’s Tyler Osher hit a two-run home, bringing his team within a single run of La Verne, 5-4.

That’s when La Verne kicked it in, finishing with 10 runs over the last three innings while holding Glendora scoreless.

Perhaps one of the biggest scoring plays of the games came from the smallest weapon, a bunt perfectly executed by lead-off hitter Tanner Siffert after Mulvey and Nolan O’Laughlin had doubled and singled. Mulvey scored from third on the attempt to get the speedy Siffert at first, and not long after O’Laughlin and Siffert would come around to score as well to help La Verne double up on Glendora 8-4.

Manager Mike Kurnick and his coaches talk it up after the game.

Manager Mike Kurnick and his coaches talk it up after the game.

From there, La Verne put the pedal down, getting 5th inning doubles from Matthew Kurnick and Ben Wolfe and a sixth inning single from Johnny Martinez. They were also patient at the plate, nursing four walks over the last two frames.

With Glendora trying to stage a late-inning rally in the bottom of the sixth, Wolfe, playing right field, threw a one-hop laser to cut down the runner at home plate to end both the threat and the ball game.

Manager Kurnick complemented his team’s overall play, including his resilient pitching staff of DeFina, O’Laughlin and Kurnick. “The pitching is looking strong,” he said after collecting his team for a post-game chat in right field.

He’s counting on them to throw lots of strikes against San Dimas, next Tuesday’s opponent, which twice defeated La Verne last season when both squads fielded 10-year-olds.

Mark your calendars!

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