The North Vermilion Youth Association 9-10 year old All-Stars captured the Mustang Super Region Tournament early Friday morning in Abbeville. NV beat SLYSI of Lafayette 17-14 . The game began at 9 p.m. on Thursday and ended Friday, just after midnight. The all-stars will be traveling to Deer Park, Texas on July 25 to compete in the PONY Zone tournament. The members of the team are kneeling (L-R) Jackson Romero, Kaine Stevens, James Higginbotham: Standing (L-R): Braylon Himel, Caleb Whitlock, Coach Jason Broussard, Caleb Hebert, Aiden F everjean, Coach Clay Young, Mason Hargrave, Cooper Petrey, Jax Smith and Wyatt Kline. Missing from the picture is Coach Steven Romero & Joshua Ruppert
Super Region Champions: North Vermilion Gets It Done
Good things come to those who wait.
The 10-year-old North Vermilion All-Stars have waited three years for this to happen.
Early Friday morning, at around 12:02 a.m., the North Vermilion All-Stars were celebrating their 17-14 victory over SLYSI of Lafayette. The game began Thursday at about 9 p.m. and ended just after midnight.
With the win, they have qualified to play in Deer Park, Texas for the next round. The tournament begins on July 25.
Last year, with most of the same boys, the club finished third in the same tourney.
Now, they can call themselves the Mustang Super Region Champions.
Clay Young is the head coach of the all-stars. Throughout the final game, he remained calm despite not watching his team’s best performance of the tournament.
‘The boys played well tonight,” said Young. “They never quit, and they fought hard. It was not our best game of the tournament, but they did not give up.”
The 17 runs were the most runs North Vermilion scored in the tourney. The all-stars won games by a score of 8-6, 8-4 and 13-10.
It looked like North Vermilion was going to blow out SLYSI after scoring four runs in the first inning. But the Lafayette team rallied and tied the game 4-4 after the first inning.
By the second inning, the score was tied 8-8. It was not until the third inning that North Vermilion finally stopped SLYSI from scoring the same amount of runs.
By the end of the third inning, NV led 12-9.
In the top of the fourth inning, Jackson Romero singled over third base, and Jax Smith also singled that made the score 14-9.
In the bottom of the fifth inning, SLYSI was held scoreless. Pitcher Caleb Hebert was on the mound at the time. He got two out of three batters to strike out, giving his team a 14-10 lead with one more inning to play.
The all-stars looked like they wanted to put the game away in the top of the sixth inning. Three straight singles by Braylon Himel, James Higginbotham, Cooper Petrey and Jax Smith put North Vermilion ahead 17-10 with half an inning to play.
Things got a little shaky in the bottom of the sixth inning. With the bases loaded and no outs, Young changed pitchers and moved Hebert to third base and put third baseman Cooper Petrey on the hill.
He got the next batter to ground out, but a run scored (17-12). Petrey struck out the next batter, but an SLYSI runner on third base stole home to make the game interesting.
With two outs and NV winning 17-14, the next batter grounded out to first base to end the game.
North Vermilion scored 17 runs on 13 hits. They only committed two errors.
NV shortstop Jax Smith led his team at the plate, going 4-for-5 at the plate. He also knocked in five runs, and he scored two runs. James Higginbotham and Cooper Petrey had three hits. The two boys scored five runs each.
NV’s number three hitter through number six-hitter combined for 12 hits. Jackson Romero also had two hits in the meat of the lineup.
NV used four pitchers.
Caleb Whitlock started the game pitching for NV and threw 1 2/3 innings, giving up four earned runs and striking out two.
Braylon Himel pitched 2 1/3 innings and allowed four hits and two earned runs.
Hebert threw 1 1/3 innings and allowed two hits and struck out three.
Petrey closed the game to earn the save. He threw one inning, surrendered one hit and had a strikeout.