Verde Valley Little League juniors open with dominant wins, play for championship Wednesday night
The Verde Valley Little League juniors baseball all-stars opened the district tournament in dominant fashion.
On Monday tournament host Verde Valley beat Williams 22-10 in the District 10 semifinals.
“It gave me an ulcer (laughs), for a good long while,” VV head coach Ross Cowgill said. “We did a lot of stuff right and we did a lot of stuff not so right but we made up for it in the end and these kids kept fighting and we kinda turned out pitching
around a little bit and started throwing some strikes. They put the ball in play and we made the plays to stop it. Bats were great (Monday), we just got fumbled up a bit with some errors and panic throwing, I think the excitement of the game or whatever but all in all I’m happy. A win’s a win.”
Verde Valley hosts Chino Valley in the championship game on Wednesday night at 6 p.m. Chino Valley beat Williams 14-6 on Tuesday to reach the title game.
VVLL opened the tournament with a 12-2 win over Chino Valley on Sunday.
“That game we went well,” Ross Cowgill said. “We came out firing with some hard pitching. The boys hit the ball well, they were seeing it well, they weren’t chasing pitches out of the zone, running the bases, taking advantage of errors by the other team and they just played hard as a group and it was a collective effort, both of them were.”
Ross Cowgill said almost all of Verde Valley’s players and performed well in their two games so far in the tournament. He also praised assistant coaches Steve Penrod and Chip Taylor.
“Standout wise, I mean our pitching (Sunday) with Hunter (Cowgill) was really solid, catching was all behind the plate with Ethan (Cowgill). We had some great hits (Sunday) with Isaiah Sanchez, Riley (Pereira) hit well (Sunday), Landen Baird and then of course (Monday) Landen came in and saved us on the mound, so he pitched excellent.”
Verde Valley reached the championship game unscathed, meaning Chino Valley needs to beat them twice to advance to State.
Winning their first two games helped Verde Valley’s chances as Williams had a bye in the first round.
“These tournaments hurt (laughs),” Ross Cowgill said. “We got four kids available that can throw and throw well I hoping that they have a good outing and find the strike zone early and we got seven guys playing behind them in the field that are geared up to stop the ball and make a play.”