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U13 Miners bash way to title

Submitted to The Union
Photo courtesy of Scott Wheeler
Photo courtesy of Scott Wheeler |

The Nevada County Miners, a 13U baseball team, traveled to Rocklin over Memorial Day Weekend and came home with the Rocklin Pony Memorial Day Tournament Championship.

Over the weekend, the Miners bashed their way to the title by outscoring their opponents 72-33, batting .555 as a team, notching 81 hits, 26 doubles, five triples and four home runs.

The Miners are made up of players from the local Little Leagues; Grass Valley, Nevada City, Penn Valley and Bear River.

Competing in their first tournament of the year, the Miners opened round-robin play Friday with an 18-7, four-inning win against the Loomis Giants.

Clay Corippo started for the Miners and went two innings. Matt Hayward followed, and Jace Wheeler closed it out. Every Miner scored at least one run and broke it open by scoring nine in the second, highlighted by a Sam Hopper triple, an Owen Day triple and a Hayward home run. Ty Trathen led the way at the plate, going 3-for-3 with two doubles. Corippo also had two hits, including a double.

Round-robin play continued Saturday as the Miners took the field against the Highland Hit Men from Antelope/North Highlands. Day started on the hill and gave up one run over two innings. Ryan Solomon replaced Day in the third and Cody Jiannino closed it out with two innings pitched. The Miner bats stayed hot as they collected 24 hits in the 17-11 victory.

Solomon got the scoring started early, leading off with a single. He came around to score on a Hayward single. Hayward and Jiannino completed the first inning scoring on a Tyler Nielson double. The Hit Men scored one, and the Miners matched it in the top of the second. The Miners then erupted for six in the third with Trathen starting the rally with a double. The Miners had a hit batter followed by a Nielson double, scoring Trathen. Luke Cornish had an infield single, loading the bases. Wheeler followed with a single, plating two more runs. Three more runs scored on singles by Kyle Felhaber, Hopper and Day. The Hit Men answered with five runs in the bottom of the third. Trathen got it going again in the fourth with a triple. Consecutive singles by Hayward, Nielson and Cornish plated two more runs. The Miners put the game out of reach with five more runs in the fifth inning. Corippo led off with a double and came around to score on a Felhaber homerun. Jiannino had an RBI single and Hayward had a two-RBI double.

The final round-robin game took place on Sunday, with the Miners facing off against the host, Rocklin Wolfpack, who were also standing at 2-0. The Miners plated one in the top of the first with a Solomon single, a Felhaber double and a sac fly by Hopper. Hopper then took the mound and went 1-2-3 in the bottom of the inning. The Miners put up four more on singles by Trathen, Nielson, Jiannino, Cornish and Solomon. Hopper held the Pack to one run in the second, giving the Miners a 5-1 lead. Hayward hit his second home run of the tournament, leading to three more runs in the third. Corippo replaced Hopper on the hill and held the Pack scoreless for an inning. Felhaber finished the game on the mound, with the final two innings. The Miners erupted for six more in the fifth, leading to a 15-7 victory.

The championship round started Monday with a rematch between the Miners and the Loomis Giants. Day toed the rubber and pitched the first three innings, giving up only one run. Jiannino finished the game with two innings of relief, also allowing only one run. The Miners scored in bunches, leading to a 15-2 victory and propelling the Miners into the championship game against the Wolfpack. The offense was led by Trathen (3-for-3 with three doubles) and Jiannino (3-for-3 with one double). Cornish, Solomon and Day all added two hits apiece.

The Miners and the Wolfpack squared off in the Memorial Day championship. Hopper started on the hill and was greeted by a leadoff double followed by a single, plating one run.

The Miners tied the game in the second as Hopper singled and came around to score on a Solomon single. After giving up two more to the Pack, the Miners erupted for five runs in the third. Nielson got things going with a double, and Jiannino was hit by a pitch. Wheeler sacrificed the runners and they both scored on a Corippo double. Hayward and Hopper singled, plating three more runs in the inning and giving the Miners a 6-3 edge after three.

The Pack picked up one more run in the fifth and were held scoreless by Hopper in the sixth. Trathen provided some insurance, leading off the sixth with a home run. Corippo relieved Hopper, taking a 7-4 lead into the seventh. He was greeted by two singles to start the inning, followed by a couple of errors and another single. This made the score 7-6 and loaded the bases with no outs. Corippo proceeded to strike out the next two batters, brining the Pack’s leadoff (and best) hitter to the plate. On an 0-1 count, the Pack hitter smashed a ball up the middle, but it was snared by shortstop Felhaber, who stepped on second to end the game and earn the championship.


Jr. Miners earn Shrine Bowl selections

Five Jr. Miner football players and four Jr. Miner cheerleaders have all been selected to participate in the Sacramento (SYF) Youth Shrine Bowl, which benefits Shriners Hospitals for Children.

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