VSLL 11-12 baseball blasts way to state tournament
Members of the Viera/Suntree Little League team pose with the Section 2 championship banner. The VSLL won the title by beating Fort Pierce 3-2 in seven innings, then pounding Boca Raton 20-1.
photos by Carl Kotala
It was only the top of the second inning, but really, there was only question that needed to be answered:
What was going to let up first – the rain, or the Viera/Suntree Little League All-Stars offense?
Turns out, it was the rain.
The VSLL offense, which had already scored 12 runs before a short rain delay, added eight more once action resumed Saturday afternoon at Viera Regional Park. The 20-1 victory over Boca Raton, coupled with a 3-2, seven-inning win against Fort Pierce earlier in the day, gave the VSLL 11-12 All-Star baseball team the Section 2 championship.
The team now head to Tallahassee, where it will play for the state championship beginning Friday night.
After being held to just six hits against Fort Pierce, the VSLL had 19 against Boca Raton and scored eight runs in the top of the first inning.
On a day when so many players came up big for the VSLL, Joshua Mack really stood out. His sacrifice fly scored Sean Rodney with the game-winning run against Fort Pierce, then he went 4-for-5 with three runs scored and hit a three-run homer in the win against Boca Raton.
Brett Anderson also homered for the VSLL. Declan McDermott hit a three-run homer and scored three runs. Ethan Huffman had a two-run shot. Matthew Valdes scored four runs and followed Huffman’s homer with a solo blast of his own.
Cole Teply hit a double against Boca Raton and a two-run homer against Fort Pierce.
Peter Petracco had a hit and scored two runs against Boca. J.T. Smith went 2-for-2 with a run scored.
On the mound, Valdes and Petracco combined to strike out 13 batters in the first game against Fort Pierce. Huffman struck out six and allowed three hits over four innings in the second game.
The Sectional tournament was originally scheduled to be played at Max Rodes Park in West Melbourne, but VSLL officials received a call early Saturday morning saying because of heavy rains, the field location had to be changed.
Parents and members of the VSLL Board of Directors went to work to get the field at Viera Regional Park ready in time for the three-game tournament to take place.
Now, it’s off to Tallahassee.