King 7, East Bay 3
Plant 14, Brooks DeBartolo 2 (six innings)
Steinbrenner 13, Spoto 1
Brandon 8, Hillsborough 1
Pitchers of the day
Brandon's Drayden Williams held Hillsborough to three hits and one earned run with three strikeouts and no walks through five innings. …With Plant scoring early and often, starter Zane Hedaya did not allow a hit before giving way to the bullpen after two scoreless innings. …Steinbrenner ace Gideon Dunn made his season debut, earning the win over Spoto. The senior right-hander pitched two innings, allowing two hits with two strikeouts and two walks.
Hitters of the day
Plant's Matt Vaka had the two biggest hits in a game that ended in the sixth inning due to the 10-run mercy rule. Vaka hit a three-run triple and three-run home run for the Panthers. …Brennan Garcia doubled, tripled, scored twice and drove in three runs for Steinbrenner, which also got a two-run double from Cole Gordon. …King rallied from a two-run deficit for a comeback win over East Bay behind a four-run fifth inning. The big hit in that inning was a three-run triple by John Hernandez. …Brandon's Williams reached base in all four at-bats, singling twice — including a bunt, walking and getting hit by a pitch. He also scored twice and drove in a run.
Defensive gems of the day
Steinbrenner turned three double plays with shortstop Kevin Merrell, second baseman Colby Burchardt and first baseman Gordon taking part in a 6-4-3 and 4-6-3 before Merrell completed an unassisted 6-3 double play. …Hillsborough centerfielder Diamond Johnson got a great jump on the ball to make a diving catch in shallow left-center on a sinking liner off the bat of Troy Linderman. Had he not made that catch the Eagles would have scored more than their three runs in the first inning. …Brandon shortstop Jordan Feist and first baseman Linderman caught Hillsborough's Johnson turning too wide at second base to complete a rare 6-3-6 double play.
Did you know?
Plant and King — both undefeated in the tourney — square off today at 1 p.m. for the Pool B title. Brandon and Steinbrenner — which also haven't dropped a tourney game — meet at 7 p.m. to determine the Pool A champ.
"Our team is full of athletes. We're small, but we're full of athletes." — Brandon's Williams
Steve Lee, Times correspondent