Long Ball Lifts Gillette Past Laramie All-Stars for State Title
The first inning was all Gillette needed in a 4-0 victory over the Laramie 11-12 All-Stars to win the Wyoming State Little League championship last Saturday.
Gillette hit a pair of two-run home runs in the bottom of the first for the only scoring in the state title game.
11-12 Manager Conrad Chavez admitted it was a tough loss after they fought back to get there.
“To even make it to Saturday was a tremendous accomplishment for our team. We were in a tough spot pitching-wise with having to play two games on Thursday. Take away a couple of missed pitches in the first inning, Mason Branch came out and pitched the game of his life. The boys were as relaxed as they had been through both the district and state tournaments. Unfortunately our bats just couldn’t get going which is a great credit to Gillette’s pitcher, who was very good about hitting his spots throughout the entire game.”
Laramie managed only two hits and three walks offensively. Mahlon Morris had a double, and Brandon Chavez an infield single. Both came in the sixth inning.
Mason Branch suffered the loss. He threw five innings and allowed four runs on just five hits. Branch walked two and struck out five.
The 11-12 All-Stars fell short of defending their state championship from last year. Eight players on the roster are eligible to return next year.
Chavez added, “This was a young team overall, so I fully expect the Laramie Majors All-Star team to be in the thick of the state title hunt next year and beyond.”
Gillette will represent Wyoming at the Northwest Regional in San Bernardino, California Aug. 6-12. Wyoming will play Washington in their first game.