IMPERIAL — Squeezing by and winning 5-3, the Imperial All-Stars hosted El Centro for the championship game Saturday. This win advances Imperial to the next tournament where they will be hosting San Diego.
Imperial battled at the plate to take a quick 1-0 lead over El Centro when Brian Martin (2) slugged a single to shortstop. Up next, David Cornejo (21) smashed a double to left center, scoring Martin and giving Imperial the quick lead.
In the second inning, Imperial stayed strong scoring four more runs. Carson Hutchison (99) played a key role by hitting a towering home run, bringing in his two other teammates, Steven Shaw (28) and Jesse Nichols (23).
Those first two innings saw El Centro struggling at the plate, attempting to catch up to Imperial. In the third inning, Imperial’s David Cornejo (21) did his job by getting on base, then Jaylen Fitzpatrick (4) hit his first RBI of the game with a double to right field, driving in Cornejo (21).
To finish the inning, El Centro improved their defense, landing the last two outs to end the slide. Down by five in the third inning, El Centro stepped up with a speedy home run hit by Antonio Veloz (21).
Heading into the fourth inning, Imperial struggled at the plate, nearly allowing El Centro to catch up. El Centro’s Veloz (21) backed up his team again with a triple to left field scoring two RBIs, bringing the score to 5-3.
Through the fifth and sixth inning, the inertia of the game slowed down with both teams using strong defense to decide the game. Both teams hit unsuccessfully, and without earning any other runs, Imperial pulled off this win with a close score of 5-3.
Following the game, pins were awarded to El Centro’s ball club to acknowledge their accomplishments throughout the year.[envira-gallery id=”80679″]