50/70 All-Stars close tournament with win over Canada
All week as the Rutherfordton-Chase 50/70 All-Stars prepared for game action, regardless of whether it be on the field, the batting cages or team huddles, head coach Curtis Snethen preached the importance of finishing strong.
After two disappointing losses that eliminated the Southeast representatives from the Intermediate World Series, they took the chance to finish strong by winning their consolation game over Canada, 10-7, Friday morning at Max Baer Park in Livermore, Calif.
“We stepped up, threw strikes and played good defense,” Snethen said after the win.
The story of the day was Adam McDowell. After wearing a protective boot on his sprained right foot since last week’s regional championship game, he starred for the Southeast both on the mound and at the plate. After starter Jake Laughter gave up four runs before recording an out, McDowell took to the mound and pitched 5 ⅓ innings allowing just one run on three hits while striking out three. At the plate he drove in three runs and scored two more.
“ I was feeling pretty good when I came in (to pitch),” McDowell said. “I was about 85 percent but I knew I had to play through it.”
“We knew we would go to Adam when we needed to. He said he could throw. We knew he wasn’t 100 percent but we gave him the ball,” Snethen said of McDowell who threw 84 pitches. “With about 11 pitches left we decided to get him out and I’m just really proud of him. He did a great job.”
McDowells biggest hit came in the bottom of the fifth inning with the bases loaded and Canada leading 5-1. A base hit up the middle cleared the bases to put Rutherfordton within one run.
After McDowell, Joe Conner came through with a sacrifice fly to deep right that scored McDowell and tied the game. However, Conner’s biggest blast of the day came in his first at-bat when he bounced on of a tree beyond the left field fence just left of the foul pole.
“I had more confidence in my swing once that happened,” Conner said.
Rutherfordton broke the tie in the sixth inning rallying for five runs in the frame. The go-ahead run came on a four-pitch walk with the bases loaded to Keaton Snethen to score Jacob Knox. Levi Parks scored on a passed ball, Joey Daigle and Keaton Snethen scored on an error off the bat of McDowell and fittingly, McDowell scored the final run on Jace Crowe’s second hit of the night.
Canada rallied for two runs with two outs in the top of the seventh, but a popout to Keaton Snethen at shortstop sealed the win for the Southeast.
McDowell, Knox, Keaton Snethen and Cameron Snethen each scored two runs while Crowe finished 2-for-4 with an RBI.
“ Everyone wants to come here and win at least one game,” Curtis Snethen said. “I’m happy we were able to get a win and go back and tell all those folks who raised all this money to get our parents here. Without [the parents] this experience wouldn’t have been so memorable for these kids.”
Now the team has three full days to enjoy California with teammates and family.
“ I’m very proud of them,” Curtis Snethen said. “I know I’m going to enjoy the week There’s going to be a lot less pressure on me because I’m not babysitting 13 13-year-olds. It’s been a rough week for me but I wouldn’t trade it for the world.”
Canada^400^010^2 - 7 10 5
Southeast^100^045^x - 10 4 2
WP: Jace Crowe
LP: Zachary Goruk