Walnut PONY’s spring season came to a close on Saturday with five new championship teams and with the announcement of this year’s All-Stars and the 2014 Board of Directors.
At Snow Creek Park, the Pony Division’s Championship took place between UCLA and Michigan. The game was a 2-2 tie until the bottom of the 4th inning when the Bruins broke it open with 5 big runs. Josh Carnighan had a 2 run double in the inning and later scored on an error. The Bruins held on thanks to the solid pitching of James Johnson and Jerry Garcia. With a final score of 9-5 UCLA, the Bruins ran through the entire Pony season undefeated at 17-0.
The Bronco Championship featured the 1 and 2 seeds, Notre Dame and Kansas. Notre Dame jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the first inning thanks to a 2-run triple that rolled to the left field wall by Xavier Mendoza. Kansas came back with 5 runs in the top of the 3rd inning but quickly gave it back when Notre Dame tied the game at 6 a piece in the bottom of the 3rd. The game remained tied till the bottom of the 5th inning when several errors and passed balls allowed Notre Dame to take a 9-6 lead and then hold on for the win by a final score of 11 to 9. Kansas bats were led by Victor Payan, who was 3 for 3, and Jared Arellano, who had 2 RBI’s and scored twice. The Fighting Irish got 3 hits from Carlos Mendoza, who also scored 3 runs.
As was typical of the entire Mustang season this year, the Championship game between USC and Michigan was extremely close and came down to the final inning. USC led 5-1 after 3 innings after a RBI triple by Devin Nunez and a RBI single from Jayden Carbonell-Smith. Michigan came back in the 4th with doubles by Diego Sigala and Joshua Schlitt. With USC leading by a run in the top of the 6th inning, the Wolverines needed a run to stay alive and they got it from leadoff batter Scotty Ike, who tripled and scored on a wild pitch. USC wasn’t finished however and got a walk-off run in the bottom of the 6th inning from Christopher Razo to win the game 7-6 and the championship.
Another game that was tied at 6 runs a piece late, was the Pinto Championship game between Florida State and Texas A&M. Going into the 5th inning with a 6-6 score, Texas A&M broke open the game with 5 runs including 3 runs when Giovanni Estrada singled in 2 runs and scored on the same play after an error on a throw to second base that rolled all the way out into deep center field. Both teams shut down the other teams bats for the remainder of the game thanks to Florida State’s Landen Del Mar striking out the side in the top of the 6th inning and the Aggies retiring six straight batters on only 9 pitches in the 5th and 6 innings to finish out the game 11-6 and take the Pinto Championship. The Aggies got 3 hits and 3 RBI’s from Giovanni Estrada, while the Seminoles got 2 hits each from Kayla Borgelt and Mathis Silva.
The final game of the day was played on the Shetland field between the Florida State Seminoles and the Michigan Wolverines for the Shetland Championship. The Wolverines led most of the game but the Seminoles kept coming back to make the game close but they never could quite catch up. Michigan took the championship by a final score of 16 to 9.
There will be more pictures available this coming week of the closing ceremonies. We should have the rosters of all the all-star teams as well.