Copperas Cove youth baseball teams conclude 2015 seasons

By TJ MAXWELL
Cove Leader-Press
BELTON – Six teams from Copperas Cove traveled to Belton this week to compete in the 8-and-under and 12-and-under Texas Teenage District Baseball Tournaments. The two 12U Cove teams (Cove Astros and Cove Cardinals) battled in the nine-team bracket at Belton’s Heritage Park. Both teams quickly found themselves embroiled in a fight to stay alive after losing their first round contests. The Cove Astros fell to the host Belton Tigers in the opening round and were ousted from the competition in their next outing against the Cameron Mariners. The Tigers raced on to an undefeated run to last night’s championship game against the winners of the Belton Astros and Belton Mets quarterfinal matchup. Results were not available as of press time Thursday afternoon. The Cardinals suffered a similar fate in their first contest, losing to the Belton Mets, and found themselves in a seemingly insurmountable hole against the Mariners in their second contest on Tuesday night. The Cardinals trailed 1-0 after two innings and the deficit grew to 4-0 by the third and halfway through the fifth inning, they trailed 7-1. The Cardinals, however, were able to mount a furious comeback to win 8-7 and advance to the third round. The Cardinals got on the scoreboard in the third inning when Sean Reneau, who doubled to reach, was batted home by a Josiah Key single. Dylan Martinez batted Reneau to third before the Key RBI single. The Cardinal bats came alive in the bottom of the fifth. Tristan Ruth singled to lead off the inning before stealing second and third and advancing home on a wild pitch. Base hits by Key and Rebecca Lampe, sandwiched by walks by Martinez and Jimmy David. Key advanced home on a passed ball to cut the Mariners lead to four, 7-3, and Chris Wyss connected on a three-run in-the-park home run to pull the Cardinals within one, 7-6. A heads up play by Justin Delgado knotted the game at 7-all. A dropped third strike hit off the foot of the Mariners’ catcher and rolled to the fence down the third-base line. Delgado charged to first base and took advantage of throwing errors by the Mariners to advance around the base paths for the tying run. After a three-up, three-down relief performance on the mound by Martinez, the Cardinals stepped to the plate with a chance to win in the bottom of the sixth inning. Patience at the plate by Ruth allowed him a free base on the walk, and after advancing around the paths on a steal and passed ball, Ruth scored on a balk by the Mariners’ pitcher to in the game. The Cardinals run ended in their next contest against the Indians on Wednesday. their 2015 campaign with an 11-2 record after sweeping the city league with an 11-0 record. The Cardinals finish the season 8-6. Across town, 10 teams from the 8U division, including four from Cove, battled for a state tournament berth at Chisholm Trail Park behind Belton High School. The Cove Phillies, Astros and Cardinals each suffered losses in the opening round while the Cove Red Sox won their first two games before suffering their first loss of the tournament against the Harker Heights Iron Pigs in the third round of the winner’s bracket. The Phillies fell to the Harker Heights Bees in the opening round before defeating the Harker Heights Scrappers. The Phillies run ended in a controversial contest against the Lampasas Rattlers when several Phillies players were ejected for not properly discarding of bats when hitting. The Cardinals also fell against the Bees in the second round of the competition after receiving a first-round bye. The Cards run was ended by the Cove Astros in the next round. The Astros also suffered a first-round loss before reeling off three straight wins in the loser’s bracket to reach the quarterfinals where they fell to the Harker Heights’ Timber Rattlers. After falling to the Timber Rattlers in the first round, the Astros defeated the Lampasas Lil’ Amigos in their first loser’s bracket matchup. They knocked off fellow Covites, the Astros, in their next outing before handing the Cove Red Sox their second-straight loss to end their hunt for a state berth. A rematch with the Timber Rattlers had similar results, ending Cove’s chance at a boy’s state qualifier. The 15U Cove Brewers received a bye straight to the state tournament in Colorado City to begin July 20. The 15U Brewers for the boys and the 10U Lady A’s for the girls will represent Cove at state. The Astros finish the season with a 14-2 record while the Red Sox finish 9-5-1, the Cardinals finish 7-5-1 and the Phillies finish 5-7-1.

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Copperas Cove, TX 76522
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