LA VERNE LITTLE LEAGUE: Major Division Cardinals Knock Off Previously Undefeated Pirates

April 29, 2017
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After Morgan Smith hits a big fly in the top of the third inning, he is greeted by his teammates.

Under a sultry, Santa Ana-wind-swept sky, the Major Division St. Louis Cardinals upended the previously undefeated Pittsburg Pirates, 9-6, paced by two triples and three RBIs from Gabriel Granados, a two-run homer by Tyler Holley and a solo shot from Morgan Smith.

The score was knotted at 2-2 until the top of the third when Holley and Smith homered back to back to put the Cardinals up, 5-2.  The Pirates responded with two runs in the bottom of the fourth to close the gap to 5-4. In the bottom of the frame, K.J. Colder had an RBI ground-out.

The score held 5-4 entering the top of the sixth. The Cardinals loaded the basis on three straight passes before Granados hit his bases loaded-clearing triple. Then Ethan Bortchert cashed in Granados to increase the margin to 9-4.

Everybody watching the game, however, knew the Pirates wouldn’t go down without a fight, especially after their miraculous comeback from two weeks ago when they rallied from a 13-0 deficit in the bottom of the sixth to win the game. This time, the Cards mustered two runs with RBI singles from Travis Owen and Jordan Kenwood before Cardinals pitcher Morgan Smith finally slammed the door shut.

“They have a great team and have come back in a lot of games so we knew were going to get their best shot at the end there,” said Cardinals manager Nate Smith. “Our guys have fought hard all year, and I’m really proud of their effort today.”

While the Cardinals lost several close games earlier in the season, they look like strong contenders for a league crown.

“These guys can beat anybody; it just depends on the day,” coach Smith said.

That day was Saturday April 29. Whether there will be more victories in May and June, Cardinals fans have to be hopeful after watching their team’s decisive performance.

Manager Nate Smith addresses his players moment after their victory.


Coverage sponsored by La Verne Realtor Colleen Bennett, Sotheby’s International Realty (909.374.4744).

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