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FRIDAY JULY 13TH REPORT DISTRICT 11 LITTLE LEAGUE BAKER CO

CHAMPIONSHIP GAME FLEMING ISLAND VERSUS HIGHLANDS

Epic Ballgame Between Fleming Island & Highlands
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Classic Baseball- Click on photos to ENLARGE

FLEMING ISLAND HOLDS OFF HIGHLANDS 16-15 IN EPIC BATTLE FOR DISTRICT 11 CHAMPIONSHIP.
Actual Champion maybe decided by Williamsport due to protests by both teams.

Fleming Island was able to score the winning run in the bottom of the 6th to finally put away a determined Highlands team that had come back twice already. It is a shame that only one team could win on this day as both teams had to fight fight and fight somemore.

 


Fleming Island came to bat in the last of the 6th with the score tied 15-15 with the District 11 Championship on the line. There had been 5 lead changes in the game so far. Both teams pitching resources were near empty. The game was nearly four hours old. The Stands were full of friends and family shouting encouragement & Cheering. The pressure on the players was immense. There had been hour long delays, protests and conferences that may take days to resolve but there was one thing clear. These were two very good Little league baseball teams on the field fighting an Epic battle to win a ball game. In the final analysis, regardless of how all the other things shake down, this was one heck of a baseball game.


Highlands, the Visitors, had been flat the last time these two teams had met in the winners bracket final a few days before. Not this time. Even before the game began with the National Anthem, you could feel that today's game would be classic. Maleke Bilbrew, ball player for Highlands in fact, sang the National Anthem in a way that will long be remembered by those that were present.


It would be fours hours later that evening when it finally came down to a conclusion. Fleming Island's Tyler Isenberg batted with the bases loaded in the bottom of the sixth inning of a 15-15 District 11 Championship game. Fleming Islands Drew Wilkerson, who had doubled to start this rally, was on third representing the games winning run if he could make it 60 feet to home plate. What Isenberg did at that moment was hit a hard ground ball that bounced high off the plate. The ball, almost like a pop fly, hung in the air and floated just over the pitcher's mound on the 2nd base side. Brett Jones II, 2nd baseman for Highlands only chance would be to force Wilkerson at home. But it was not to be. The ball had to many loops in it. When it did come down Jones had no chance to get Wilkerson and he scored without a throw... It was a game winning, walk off single for Isenberg.

FLEMING ISLAND 16 HIGHLANDS 15 CHAMPIONSHIP GAME PHOTO RECAP
1st inning

Highlands let everyone know they came to play right from the start. Keegan Barrs, Leadoff hitter for Highlands, singled. Bryson Kirksey then blasted a two run homer over the centerfield fence for a quick 2-0 Highlands lead. But Fleming's starting pitcher Isenberg struck out the next three batters. But Highlands Brett Jones II reached 1st when the Fleming could not catch the breaking ball in the dirt. Bilbrew then reached when his pop fly was dropped for an error. Levi Sigler walked and the bases were loaded with two out. Highlands next batter Devyn Hills lined a shot through the infield and into right field. Looks like a sure RBI single. But say it ain't so Joe! Fleming's right fielder, Ean Chase, comes up throwing and forces out Sigler at 2nd base to end the inning. This was huge defensive play, saving at least one run and seems to be a set play that Fleming has used successfully a number of time throughout the playoffs.

Kirksey two run Blast makes it 2-0 Highlands
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Hills shot should have added to Highlands Rally
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But Fleming Island's RightFielder Chase nails runner at 2nd to kill the Rally

Fleming Island was unable to get anything going in the 1st inning off Highlands Starter Keegan Barrs. End of 1st HIGHLANDS 2 FLEMING ISLAND 0

2nd inning--2nd inning--2nd inning--2nd inning--2nd inning--2nd inning--


In the top of the 2nd inning Highlands mounted another threat. After an out, Barrs hit a double down the Left Field over the 3rd base bag. Isenberg struck out the next batter. Nick Love then hit a line single to right and had to giddy up to keep from getting nailed at first by Fleming' s strong armed right fielder Chase. Love then stole 2nd un-opposed. Highlands Kris Williams then hit a rocket line drive that Fleming Island 2nd baseman Troy Myers snared to end the threat. Even though Highlands had the lead 2-0 it could easily been 5-0 or worse had it not been for Fleming Island's clutch defense play.

It looked like Highlands was going to have another easy inning when Fleming Island came to bat in the lower half of the 1st. The first two batters were retired on groundouts & Highlands was now facing the bottom of Flemings lineup. But Myers was able to draw a walk. Brett Bear then hit a slow roller to short and was able to beat the throw for a leg single. Wilkerson then walked to load the bases with two out and Fleming now at the top of the order. Austin Morton stepped up and was called down the line by Fleming's coach Chuck Isenberg. Was the Coach was telling Morton to take a strike since the pitcher had walked two batters already? Obviously not. Morton was first pitch swinging and smoked a line drive fly that burned Highland's leftfielder who had been playing shallow. It was a 2 run double and tied the game at 2-2.

MORTON HITS FIRST PITCH OVER HIGHLANDS LF
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2 RUN DOUBLE TIES GAME AT 2-2

Kaleb Albritton "The HAMMER" now stood at the dish. He, without a doubt, was one of the most feared batters in this Playoff series. In one earlier game going 5 for 5 with 3 homers. But this is now and that was then....Word was that several of Flemings players were sick from a flu type bug of some sort. Albritton had been given Fluids via IV in order to even play on this day. He was still wearing the hospital ID tag on his arm. Barrs had struck him out last time. Tie game. Two outs. 1st base was open. Albritton is a documented Monster. Do you walk him? Albritton clearly did not look like himself this day. Highlands decided to pitch to him and Highlands pitcher Barrs looked confident working the count to 1 ball 2 strikes. But Albritton was able to fight off the two strikes pitch that was probably low and out of the strike zone. He was able to get enough bat on it and grounded a RBI single into right.

That gave Fleming Island the lead for the first time in the contest 3-2. Isenberg, up next for Fleming, slam hit the ball out of the park for a three run homer. Looking back at my "should we walk the Hammer?" comments I failed to factor that the "Slammer" was batting behing the "Hammer". It all makes sense to me now. Isenberg's blast make it 6-2 Fleming Island. The next batter bounced out to D. Hill at third to end the inning. But you could see Fleming Island's big 6 run two out rally had somewhat stunned the Highlands players.

 

Fleming's Isenberg watches his 3-Run homer leave
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Homerun Shot to Right Center makes it 6-2 Fleming Island


3rd inning--3rd inning--3rd inning--3rd inning--3rd inning--3rd inning--

Highlands matters went from bad to worse in the 3rd inning. Highlands went 3 up and 3 down. Two grounders to Fleming 3rdbaseman Troy Myers and a Flyout to Chase in RF.

Fleming island however was far from done. Myers dropped a single to right just out of the reach of a diving Love, Highlands Right Fielder. Austin Kittle then blasted a two run "Big-Fly" over the right field fence. it was now 8-2. Highlands pitcher, Barrs next recorded a strikeout and got the Fleming Brett Bear to hit a groundball. But the throw was off target and Bear was onbase with the error. Bear moved to 2nd on a groundout.

Kittle connects and sends a "Big-Fly" over RF
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2-run Dinger adds to Fleming Islands Big Lead
Kittle's drive can be seen just over the treetops
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Highlands Coach Brett Jones called timeout and came to the mound and gave his players a pep talk. Also he brought Evan Sanders into the game to pitch. Things were looking rather Bleek for Highlands at that point in time. Coach Jones was trying to put a charge back into his guys. Helping in this was the people in the Stands who had been shouting encouragement 

Highlands Coach Brett Jones Trys to Rally his Team
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Also Brings Sanders into the game to Pitch


It does not start particularly well for Sanders and a pitch glances off the catchers mitt and Bear moves to third. Morton Draws a walk to put runners on the corners and two out for Fleming. Albritton, up next hit a seeing eye single just out of reach of a diving Barr (now playing 2nd). Now 9-2 Isenberg and his hot bat steps up and lines a double to Right that scores Morton. Now 10-2 the next batter for Fleming walks and the bases are loaded. It is getting rather squirrely at this point. Fleming had an 8 run lead. A hit here might would score run 9 and 10. If that were to happen and Highlands were unable to score in the top of the 4th then the 10 run mercy rule would end the game. This was a critical moment for Highlands. Thankfully Sanders was able to get a full count strikeout to end the inning.

Evan Sanders comes in to pitch for Highlands
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4TH inning--4TH inning--4TH inning--4TH inning--4TH inning--4TH inning--

Highlands came to bat needing something good to happen...and soon. Highland supporters got louder at this point- trying to charge up Highlands bats. It would work. Hills banged a single to center. Fleming changed pitchers. Kaleb Rios trots in from RF. Hello there- Sanders greets him with a solid single to RF.

Devyn Hills watches his single fall
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Hills single is the start of a Highlands Rally
Sanders follows with a solid single into RF
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An attempt to pick
Hill off 2nd goes into CF and Both runners move up 60 feet. Barr then hits a Medium Fly to RF. Hill tags from Third and heads toward home. Sanders also tags up and speeds toward third. Fleming has turned the play on Sanders and it looks like a good throw & may get Sanders. Sanders Slides. SAFE. The ball rolls a couple of feet away from the Fleming Third baseman. Barr is credited with a sacrifice fly and an RBI for getting Hill home. Kirksey next is really pumped and wants badly to keep the Highlands rally going. You can see the desire as On one pitch he swings, missed and slams his bat into the ground. Seemed insignificant at the moment. Kirksey, behind in the count has to protect the plate and taps a slow grounder to short. It is slow enough that he is able to beat the throw and has an infield hit. Love next walks on a 3-2 pitch and Highlands now has the bases loaded and one out. Williams then is hit by a pitch to force in Sanders. You could feel the belief meter move on the Highlands side. Fleming Island could feel the uneasy meter on the other end and changes pitchers. Highlands trails 10-4 but you would think it was 10-10 the way the Highlands crowd was cheering- now that there was something to cheer about.

Kirksey hits slow roller to short
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But Kirksey beats the throw for infield hit
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Austin Morton is now on the mound for Fleming Island to face Jones. Bases still loaded. One out. Jones bunts foul then hits a long fly way over the head of Fleming Islands CF who had snuck in shallow. The other outfielders for Fleming do a good job backing up and hold Jones at first. But Jones single drives in two runs.

Brett Jones II watches his hit
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2-run single goes over the head of Fleming Island outfielder playing short

The next pitch nails Highlands batter Bilbrew in the back with a painful sounding thud. Bases loaded again for Highlands. With Sigler batting for Highlands a pitch gets away from Fleming's catcher and Williams makes a break for the plate and beats the throw with a slide. The other runners advance also - so now it is 10-7 with runners at 2nd & 3rd. Still one out.

Bilbrew takes one in the back
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A Painful Run Batted In- but keeps rally going for Highlands in the 4th inning
Williams scores when ball gets away from catcher
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Sigler then hits a ball that smacks down on the plate and bounces high in the air like a superball. It is high as if a popup coming down on the 2nd base side of the mound. Flemings Pitcher Morton and firstbaseman Albritton break to try and get the sky bouncer. Morton pulls it in but behold! No one is covering 1st base. Flemings 2ndbaseman is in high gear to try and cover but Sigler is safe. Worst for Fleming, Jones scores from 3rd and it is now 10-8.

Sigler high bounce hit off the plate comes down
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Fleming pitcher & 1st baseman converge on ball
But no one is on first and Sigler has a hit
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Jones scores on play as Highlands rally goes on

D.Hills was next up for Highlands. He raps a clean hit to left. Fleming Leftfielder playing shallow, tries to nail Bilbrew at third. Bilbrew slides. SAFE!

Fleming Coach Isenberg gives Albritton the call
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Fleming Island third pitcher in the Highlands big 4th inning rallyq


Flemings Coach Isenberg comes in and calls AlBritton in to pitch- in effort to stop the bleeding. Sanders then bangs a shot up the middle. Another hit for Highlands! Bilbrew scores. Pinch runner Moore rounds third and looks like he is going to try and score the tying run for Highlands. But Moore sees the throw from the outfield and slams on the breaks. The throw from the outfield is cut off by Albritton. Moore is standing halfway up the line between third & home - no mans land. He is in a pickle.

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Albritton does the textbook play- runs right at Moore with the ball trying to get Moore to commit to third vice home. That part went well as Moore breaks towards third. Albritton tosses to Flemings 3rd baseman as Moore stops quickly and heads the other direction. The thirdbaseman hesitates for a fraction of a second. That gives Moore the time he needed to get past Albritton. Albritton had to do a back flip to get out of the way less he be called for obstruction. That left only Flemings catcher to deal with Moore who is rambling towards home as Flemings 3rd baseman tosses the ball home. It is going to be a close play. The ball is there. Moore slides as the catcher puts the tag on him. A hush comes over the ballpark. Is he safe or out? The umpire pauses then signals. SAFE!
It is now 10-10.

Amazingly Highlands had erased a 10-2 Fleming lead. It is now 10-10 and Highlands is still cooking. Hill is on third. Still one out. The nightmare continues for Fleming Island and a pitch goes to the backstop and Hills scores to make it 11-10. Barrs then walks.


What happens next changes the course of the entire evening. Kirksey up next goes down swing for out two. Kirksey angry with himself chops down with the bat. The third base umpire comes over and gives Kirksey a warning about that type of theatrics. But the home plate umpire comes over and says that he had warned Kirksey earlier about the very thing. The third base umpire said he did not know Kirksey had been warned before. Tranlated... Kirksey is ejected for getting two umpire warnings. Thrown out of the game.

Highlands coach Jones cannot believe it. He comes in to plead with the umpires. His point was that he did not know Kirksey had been offically warned earlier. For sure he did not hear words to that effect. He did not have that understanding from what the umpire had said earlier. I heard The Home umpire say that he told Coach Jones to "take care of that Player" and considered that the first warning. Kirksey was ejected and nothing that Jones could argue would change that. Coach Jones then got with the Tournament Director with the business of filing an offical protest. Not only for the ejection of Kirksey but for other things. Fleming Coach came into the mix and now was going to file a protest of his own.


The game was hopelessly derailed. Coaches, Umpires, every Little League offical person present were in a conference that delayed the game for nearly two hours. When it was over... it was announced that the protests had been offically filed and that it may take days for Little League high command to rule on the outcome. No Champion would be crowned on this day.


I was going to let all this business go as I am a casual observer and report on sports games. I do not get involved or question umpires/ officals as a rule. I have no connection to either team. I have no skin in this game. But this to me looked somewhat out of whack. I am watching and photographing everything from a few feet from home plate. I did not hear Kirksey get a warning or anything that suggested that he might be tossed for a repeat performance. The third base umpire did not get that impression either based on his comment that "he did not know he (Kirksey) had been warned before". Highlands coach was standing next to 3b ump in the thirdbase box. If there had been a warning I would imagine that 3rd base ump would have known. But he did not. This tells me that home ump did not make his warning clear enough- at least to the people who needed to know the most.

Here we are, locked in an epic little league game where the oldest player is 12. They are playing the biggest game of thier lives. There is immense pressure on these players. Some are shaking from the pressure.

Kirksey was clearly chopping his bat, disappointed at himself. He was not upset at the umpire call. He was not showing up the other team or the umps. I think tossing a youngster in this situation was the wrong approach. This was a game changer. That is the way I see it.


Fast forward... nearly two hours. Game on again. Albritton still on the mound for Fleming Island. He gets the next Highlands batter on a called strike three. Inning over for Highlands. 9 runs scored and Highlands has the lead 11-10.

Fleming Island comes in to bat and gets a couple of walks mixed in with a strike out and fielders choice. Two on two out for Fleming leadoff hitter Morton. Morton hits a flyball to center. Highlands Center and Left Fielders converge on the fly but neither commits fully to making the catch. It falls in and Bear comes home to tie the game 11-11. Albritton then sends a ball into orbit, a 3-run homer. Then Isenberg does the same. Hammer and Slammer... back to back homers. Fleming Island now has a 15-11 lead. The back to back homers in this situation, one would think, would normally be the knife in the heart. Most teams could not come back from that. But Highlands is not a normal team.

Isenberg home run follows Albrittons 3-run HR
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Hammer & Slammer go back to back HR to make it 15-11 Fleming Island

But it would take an inning. Highlands nor Fleming Island could score in the Fifth. So, it was the 6th and final inning. Highlands was chasing a 15-11 score. Sigler lead off and ripped a single into right center. Devyn Hills walked on four pitches. The next pitch is high and outside and off the catchers glove and to the backstop. Sigler and Hills move up to 2nd and 3rd. Sanders up next for Highlands squares as if to bunt. But a fastball cracks him right on the shin. That really hurts and Sanders limped about in obvious scale 10 pain. But Highlands was out of players. Sanders tried to walk it off, which is hard to do when you cannot walk. But somehow he limps down to first like a wounded deer... barely able to walk. Highlands now has Barrs up. Bases loaded. None out. Barrs rips a clean hit over third that kicks past the Fleming Left fielder. Sigler and Hills score easily but Sanders is being waved around third just as the the ball reaches Fleming island Shortstop Austin Morton. Sanders slams on his breaks a few steps from third. Morton sees this and throws a strike to third. Sanders has no chance and is out. Two runs have scored but the Sanders pick off is huge. Instead of tying runner at 2nd no out.... it is tying run at the plate and one out.

Fleming Island makes a pitching change. Drew Wilkerson goes to the hill to try and close the deal for Fleming Island. He is facing Terrell Moore. In the game for the ejected Kirksey. Moore is first pitch swinging and hits a hot shot off the glove of the Fleming Island 3rd baseman. Barrs moves to third on Moore's hit. Nick Love stands at the plate for Highlands. A pitch into the dirt allows Moore to advance to 2nd base. Love lines a base hit to right field and Barrs trots home and Moore hugs third. Williams batting now for Highlands takes a pitch and Love steals 2nd without a throw. Williams hits a shallow fly into left. Would it be deep enough to score Moore? Fleming shortstop Morton calls for the flyball and makes the catch in short left and comes up ready to throw. Moore bluffs but Morton again rockets a throw to third to try and nail Moore who is step off the bag. But Moore makes it back. But now there are two outs and Fleming still sports a one run lead 15-14.


Highlands hope now ride on Brett Jones II. Jones swings and misses then fouls the ball down third. Fleming is one strike away from putting this game into the books. But Jones rips a shot to third- too hot and the ball bounces off towards short. Moore races home. 15-15. The next pitch is in the dirt and bounces away from the Fleming Island Catcher Brett Bear. Runners move up. But Wilkerson is able to get the next Highlands batter to strike out and ends the threat.


Fleming Island, the home team, needs only to score one run to win this. Wilkerson leads off for Fleming and he smokes a line shot to right center that rolls into the gap. Wilkerson motors to 2nd and is there easy with a lead off double. Morton then walks. Albritton then hits a bouncer that hops into right for a single to load the bases. BASES LOADED- NONE OUT- WINNING RUN ON THIRD. The last person Highlands wanted to see here was Isenberg. Isenberg stood In the already 4 for 4 and two homers. Well, as you very well may know. Isenberg gets the infield hit that bounces off the plate scoring Wilkerson for the game winner.

A classic finish to a classic battle. In the end the score was 16-15. Fleming Island, the winner on the field, now must wait for the ruling on the protests to find out if it is indeed the District 11 champs. Highlands had showed great character in this ball game only to come up short.

FLEMING ISLAND EAGLES
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ON THE FIELD CHAMPIONS DISTRICT 11 MAJORS LITTLE LEAGUE PLAYOFFS
HIGHLANDS LITTLE LEAGUE DISTRICT 11
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ON THE FIELD RUNNER UP

THURSDAY JULY 12TH REPORT DISTRICT 11 LITTLE LEAGUE BAKER CO

HIGHLANDS DEFEATS ST AUGUSTINE 14-6 TO EARN REMATCH WITH FLEMING ISLAND IN CHAMPIONSHIP GAME
HIGHLANDS BRINGS "A" GAME & ENDS ST AUGUSTINE WINNING STREAK

In the Semi-Final game of the District 11 Majors Little League baseball on Thursday Highlands came to make a statement. That Statement "We are a much  better team than the showing in the loss to Fleming Island". They showed that in the 14-6 win over a tough St Augustine team. Highlands scored in every inning and kept its posture early in the contest when it seemed every call was going against them. They built an 8-0 by the 3rd inning and had it not been for some tough breaks and close calls- none that went their way- it likely would have been larger than that.

 

Highlands scored two runs in the wild first inning despite have two runners thrown out on the bases. Keegan Barrs started things for Highlands with a leadoff single to left. After an out, Nick Love was beaned. Love limped to first putting runners on 1st and 2nd & one out for Kris Williams. Williams rapped a base hit to left. Barrs rounded third just the umpire crossed his path and Barrs, it seemed, was forced to break his stride. That was all St Augustine needed as Left Fielder Wyatt Anderson let loose a strong throw and St Aug catcher Simon blocked the plate. Barrs was dead meat... out by a mile. 

BARRS IS DEAD MEAT AS SIMON BLOCKS PLATE
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WILD FIRST INNING IN ST AUGUSTINE/HIGHLANDS SEMI-FINAL GAME


Now with two outs, Highlands had runners at 2nd and 3rd with Brett Jones II at the plate. Jones smacked a base hit to center scoring Love and Williams, running hard from second with two outs, steamed toward home. St Augustine center Fielder Zach Urvina charged in & made a strong throw. The ball arrived just before Williams did but St Aug Catcher Simon was slightly up the line this time. Williams attempted to slide away from the tag but looked like he would be nailed. But Williams slide dislodged the ball and it trickled up the first base line. As Williams crawled back to double tap the plate it seemed the action was over. But No sports fans! Seemingly forgotten in all the fuss, Jones was still motoring around the bases and on his way to third. St Augustine tried to make a play at third on Jones. Jones had beat the throw but his late slide had him go slightly past the bag. But in big league fashion had one hand out still on the bag. St Augustine 3rd baseman kept the tag on Jones' arm as Mr Ump signaled that Jones was safe. But Holy Cow! Mr Ump points to the Tag on Jones hand and pumps his arm. OUT! Ump rules that Jones hand had come off the bag at some point.

 

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WEDNESDAY JULY 11TH REPORT DISTRICT 11 LITTLE LEAGUE BAKER CO

FLEMING ISLAND DEFEATS HIGHLANDS 15-3 TO ADVANCE TO CHAMPIONSHIP GAME

Fleming Island Hot Hitting rolls over Highlands

ST AUGUSTINE COMES FROM BEHIND TO WIN HARD FOUGHT CONTEST WITH MILL CREEK 10-7 IN ELIMINATION GAME. WILL FACE HIGHLANDS THURSDAY- WINNER ADVANCES TO CHAMPIONSHIP GAME                       Jameison Simon Grand Slam in St Augustine Seven run Rally in 4th Inning is Clutch. Rally Wipes out Mill Creek's 5-1 lead.

FLEMING ISLAND 15 HIGHLANDS 3 GAME SUMMARY


Fleming Island Eagles Continued to hit the cover off the baseball in The District 11 Majors Playoffs Wednesday at Baker County Little League Complex. Fleming Island scoring was helped, in part, by Highlands Defense which did not play at the high level we had seen in the previous ball games. In fact the wheels came completely off the Highlands wagon in the first inning when Fleming island scored 11 runs.

Austin Morton started things for Fleming Island when he ripped a double over the head of Highlands Right fielder for a stand up double. After an out was recorded, Fleming Island Pizza powered Slugger  Kaleb Albritton hit a line shot up the middle for an RBI single. Just like that, Fleming was on the scoreboard.

story and pictures being added to report- check back for updates


ST AUGUSTINE 10 MILL CREEK 7 GAME SUMMARY

 Meanwhile the St Augustine/ Mill Creek game was shaking out as a classic. St Augustine scored first when leadoff hitter Zach Urvina hit a solo homer. Mill Creek later escaped further damage getting out of a bases loaded jam when Pitcher John Henderson got the batter with a called third strike.

Zach Urvina about to hit a leadoff HR
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Homer Puts St Augustine up 1-0 in 1st inning


With it 1-0 Mill Creek got things going in the top of the 2nd inning. Duncan VanKateran reached on an infield hit. Zach Stuckey then laid down a bunt that plopped two feet in front of Home plate. Like a cat, St Augustine Catcher Simon pounced on the ball and came up throwing to 2nd to try and force VanKateran. But the Quick throw to 2nd was muffed and everyone was safe.

 

St Aug Catcher Simon pounces on Stuckey's bunt
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But Everyone was safe when Simon's throw was muffed.

Next Mill Creek hitter Sam Gallardo banged a hit to center. Stuckey stopped at third but Eden rounded 2nd on the hit and steamed toward the already occupied thirdbase. Eden was halfway to third before he realized he was in a pickle. As St Augustine began to run down Eden between 2nd and 3rd, Stuckey made a break for home plate. But St Augustine shortstop threw a strike to Simon and Stuckey was out at home.

Andy LaGatta then rapped a single to center
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Hit scores Eden for a 2-1 lead for Mill Creek


Next Mill Creek hitter Sam Gallardo banged a hit to center. Stuckey stopped at third but Gallardo rounded 2nd on the hit and steamed toward the already occupied thirdbase. Gallardo was halfway to third before he realized he was in a pickle. As St Augustine began to run down Gallardo between 2nd and 3rd, Stuckey made a break for home plate. But St Augustine shortstop Jalen Steiger threw a strike to Simon and Stuckey was out at home. Keeping things moving, Andy LaGatta then rapped a single to center to score Gallardo and Mill Creek now had a 3-1 lead. John Henderson then grounded a single past a diving Steiger. A pitch in the dirt moved both runners up and then a Pete Town single to left scored both runners. 5-1 Mill Creek.

From there pitching and defense took over. Henderson, for Mill Creek, struck out the side in the bottom of 2nd. Sean Bradford, for St Augustine struck out the side in the top of the 3rd. In the Bottom of the 3rd, Henderson struck out the first two batters making a string of 6 straight St Augustine batters he wiffed. Even so Steiger was on base for St Augustine with one out since the catcher could not hold onto a third strike. Bradford, St Augustine clean up hitter, hit a shot up the middle. Looked like a sure hit. Holy Cow Batman! Henderson was just able to get some leather on the rocket shot and it glanced off towards Mills Creek 2nd baseman Tyler McKay. McKay dived to his left and gloved the hot grounder. He then flipped backhanded from his knees to force out Steiger at 2nd. The Next St Augustine batter Spencer Harvey also hit a shot back up the box. Again Henderson got a piece of it and again it glanced off towards 2nd base. There Shortstop Sam Gallardo knocked he ball aroung the 2nd base bag. Then as the St Augustine runner arrived he dove and tagged the bag for the force out.

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TUESDAY JULY 10TH REPORT DISTRICT 11 LITTLE LEAGUE BAKER CO

ST AUG. DREW CARRAWAY TRIES &SCORE ON A WILD PITCH
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He didn't make it and was tagged out by Yulee pitcher Josh Bedell-Murray

ST AUGUSTINE DEFEATS YULEE 15-6 TO ADVANCE IN PLAYOFFS. SEAN BRADFORD HITS "GRAND SALAMI" IN ST AUGUSTINE VICTORY.

MILL CREEK WINS ALSO 17-5 OVER NOL. FOUR TEAMS LEFT. MILL CREEK FACES ST AUGUSTINE WEDNESDAY. HIGHLANDS AND FLEMING ISLAND BATTLE IN WINNERS BRACKET FINAL

BRADFORD HITS GRAND SLAM IN 6 RUN IST INNNING
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ST AUGUSTINE CLEAN UP HITTER HELPS ST AUGUSTINE ADVANCE IN DISTRICT 11 PLAYOFFS

St Augustine advanced in the District 11 Major Little League Playoffs Tuesday at Baker County Little League Complex in McClenney. St Augustine was able to get past Yulee 15-6 in an elimination game.

Josh Bedell-Murray blasted two homeruns in the game and Ryan West went yard also for Yulee. But it would not be enough. In the end St Austustine had more than enough to put Yulee away.

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Yulee did not score in the top of the first. But St Augustine jumped on Yulee early. Yulee's Pitcher hit St Augustine leadoff hitter Zach Irving, walked the next batter & then hit Jameisen Simon to load the bases.
Sean Bradford then hit an 0-2 pitch out of the park for St Augustine. Bradford's Grand Slam made it 4-0 St Augustine. The next batter reached on an error and then Sam Yelton singled. A pitching Change for Yulee was in order as the starter had not been able to record an out. Bedell-Murray came on for Yulee and was able to get a couple of strikeouts but sadly also walked a couple. When the inning was over Yulee was looking up and chasing 6 runs.

Yulee got on the board in the 2nd inning when Nate Miller's line drive single to Right scored Noah Thrift to make it 6-1. St Augustine was unable to score. Mostly since Yulee catcher Ryan West picked off a St Augustine runner who had strayed off the first base bag. Yulee seemed to gain strength from West who throughout the playoff series continued to impress with his play. The day before West had made the defensive play of the playoffs making a diving catch of a failed bunt attempt.

You could feel that the worm may have turned for Yulee. Sure enough Yulee then got a "Big-Fly" from Bedell-Murray and a few batters later got a two run Homer from Ryan West. Suddenly Yulee had closed the gap and trailed by only two runs. The scoreboard showed St Augustine 6 and Yulee 4 with St Augustine coming to bat in the lower half of the 3rd inning.

However Yulee's hopes of a comeback melted down at that point. St Augustine Drew Carroway reached on a one out walk. Mac Vaugh was next and hit a high bouncing Grounder that had enough loops in the bounces that Yulee had no chance to get Carroway at 2nd and Vaugh was safe at first with a bleeder infield single. A walk loaded the bases for St Augustine. St Augustine Lead off hitter Irving then dropped down a surprise bunt and the Safety squeeze worked like a charm. Everyone was safe making it 7-4. Jalen Steiger then rapped a double to center scoring two more runs for St Augustine making it 9-4. Bradford bases loaded walk drove in another run as the rally continued. Spencer Harvey grounder to third drove in the final run of the inning. It was 11-4 at that point, St Augustine.

Yulee however would not go away. Bedell-Murray hammered a homerun out of the park with Brett Radtke onboard to make it 11-6.

St Augustine would score four more runs in the next inning to make it 15-6 and that eventually was the final.

In the 8 o'clock Elimination game Mill Creek used Homeruns by Matt Eden and John Henderson to defeat NOL 17-5. Mill Creek will face St Augustine Wednesday
Night after Fleming Island/ Highlands winners bracket Final is played.

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MONDAY JULY 9TH REPORT DISTRICT 11 LITTLE LEAGUE BAKER CO

FLEMING ISLAND POUNDS YULEE 26-0 TO ADVANCE TO DISTRICT 11 WINNERS BRACKET FINAL

HIGHLANDS WINS BIG ALSO 17-1 OVER NOL,  TEAMS TO FACE OFF WEDNESDAY JULY 11TH

AUSTIN MORTON WAS LIGHTS OUT
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TOSSES A MASTER PIECE TWO HIT SHUTOUT OVER YULEE

Fleming Island Eagles First Baseman Kaleb Albritton went 5 for 5, blasting 3 homeruns and had 11 runs batted in, while Eagle Starting Pitcher Austin Morton Threw a two hit shutout, striking out 7 in four innings of work.  Yulee could not keep pace with the powerful Fleming Island hitting machine... especially Albritton. Albritton was a wrecking crew. He hit a two run monster blast in the first. He then whalloped a three run Homer in the 2nd. In the 3rd inning Albritton got up twice and banged out two RBI singles as Fleming Island lit up the scoreboard scoring 14 times in the 3rd inning. In the 4th inning he launched a "Grand Salami".

Albritton's 1st inning "BIG-FLY"
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Blast gave Fleming Island a quick 2-0 lead.

Fleming's Joey Musa had four hits and scored four runs. Austin Kittle also went "downtown" hitting a homer. Kittle also had a double, reached on an error & was hit by a pitch. 

Kittle knocks one out of the Yard
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Click photo to ENLARGE

Fleming Island is now 3-0 in the District 11 Major Baseball Divison Playoffs hosted by Baker County Little League.
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Also 3-0 in the Playoffs is Highlands who defeated NOL 17-1 in the late game July 9th. These two teams will play on Wednesday in the Winners bracket final.

Nick Love Blasts a 3-run dinger
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Meanwhile in the late game, Highlands shocked NOL 17-1.  Brett Jones hit a two-run homer in the 1st inning and Nick Love.. Nick Love hit a three run bomb in the 2nd.

Highlands shortstop Bryson Kirksey had four hits
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Scored four times in Highlands 17-1 win over NOL

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AAA GLOBAL SERVICES  * FLEMING ISLAND FL * USA * 32003 Phone: 904 214-4855 EMAIL: JAMES.STEWART@AAAGLOBALSERVICES.COM

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