USA Stars, AABC meets for Gold Medal at USA Baseball Tournament of Stars
June 23, 2007
Title contest a rematch from last year; Babe Ruth edges PONY, NABF clips Dixie
CARY, North Carolina - T.J. House (LHP; Picayune, MS) hurled two-hit ball over six shutout innings and Eric Hosmer (INF; Cooper City, FL) added three hits to pace AABC to a 4-1 victory against RBI in semifinal action June 23 in the 15th Annual USA Baseball Tournament of Stars at Thomas Brooks Park at the new USA Baseball National Training Complex. The eight-team tournament, which began June 19, is showcasing 144 of the nation's elite age 18-and-under high school and college athletes.
The victory sends three-time defending champion AABC (3-0-1) into the gold-medal contest at 4 p.m. (Eastern time) June 24 against the USA Stars. Buoyed by the combined two-hit pitching of Matthew Purke (LHP; Spring, TX) and Tyler Stovall (LHP; Hokes Bluff, AL) and a solo home run from Riccio Torrez (INF; Phoenix, AZ), the Stars (3-1) blanked the American Legion, 7-0, June 23 to advance. The gold-medal contest will be a rematch of the same two teams from the 2006 title game. AABC won last year's matchup 10-5.
In other semifinal action June 23, Dimitri De La Fuente (INF; West Covina, CA) cracked a three-run double and Kevin Johnson (INF; Peabody, MA) chipped in three hits to lead Babe Ruth past PONY 5-4. Also, NABF bunched three of its four hits to score its only runs in the fourth inning and then held on to edge Dixie 2-1.
Besides the gold-medal affair, three other games are scheduled for the tournament's final day on June 24. Dixie (0-3-1) will meet PONY (0-4) for seventh place at 10 a.m. In the fifth place game, Babe Ruth (2-2) will face NABF (3-1) at 1 p.m. The bronze-medal contest between RBI (2-2) and Legion (2-2) will be played at noon.
Hosmer's three hits paced a 10-hit AABC attack against RBI. Jordan Swagerty (INF; Sachse, TX) and Amar Lewis (OF; Troy, NY) each collected two hits for AABC. Hosmer had a run-scoring single while Swagerty chipped in a two-run double during a three-run fifth-inning flurry. House and Michael Russo (RHP; Hamilton, NJ) teamed up to permit just seven hits. Chris Smith (OF; Compton, CA) notched a pair of hits for RBI.
Purke checked the Legion on just three hits in seven innings while striking out 10 in the Stars win. Stovall then allowed just one hit over the final two innings while fanning three to complete the shutout. He also added two hits and a run scored at the plate. The Stars scored the only runs it would need in a four-run third inning. The squad had only one hit in the inning but took advantage of four Legion errors to take the lead. Torrez added his homer in the fifth inning. J.P. Ramirez (OF; New Braunfels, TX), who collected two hits, finished the Stars' scoring with a two-run single in the ninth. The Legion managed just five base runners in the game.
De La Fuente's bases-loaded double and a run-producing single by Johnson came during a four-run second inning that gave Babe Ruth an early 4-1 advantage. Babe Ruth was victorious despite being outhit, 11-6, by PONY. Chris Moon (OF; Tucson, AZ) and Bentley Heyman (INF; Atlanta, GA) notched three hits apiece for PONY while Robbie Grossman (OF; Cypress, TX) and David Villasuso (C; Miami, FL) had two each.
Babe Ruth's Justin Warrington (LHP, Granville, OH) got the final out with two PONY runners aboard.
NABF tallied both of its runs against Dixie in the fourth inning. Trailing 1-0, NABF's Preston Tucker (OF; Tampa, FL) drove in one run with a single while the other run crossed the plate on a grounder by Austin Stadler (OF; Midlothian, VA). Four NABF hurlers made those runs stand up the rest of the way, combining on a seven-hitter. Joey Belviso (OF; Pembroke Pines, FL) registered three hits and drove in Dixie's only run in the second inning. Dixie stranded 10 runners in the contest, including the potential tying run in the ninth inning. Stadler tossed the final inning for NABF to earn a save.
The activities of USA Baseball and the Tournament of Stars are made possible by the contributions from Major League Baseball.
USA Baseball is the National Governing Body of the sport in the United States and a member of the United States Olympic Committee. The organization selects and trains the USA Baseball National Team, the USA Baseball Junior National Team (18 and under),the USA Baseball Youth National Team (16 and under),the USA Baseball 14U national Team (14 and under) and the USA Baseball Women's National Team, which participate in various international competitions each year.
For all USA Baseball game stories, boxscores and results, log on to the official website of USA Baseball: www.usabaseball.com.
15th Annual USA Baseball Tournament of Stars
June 19-25, 2007, Thomas Brooks Park, Cary, N.C.
June 23 Semifinal Round Results
Babe Ruth (2-2) def. PONY (0-4), 5-4
NABF (3-1) def. Dixie (0-3-1), 2-1
AABC (3-0-1) def. RBI (2-2), 4-1
USA Stars (3-1) def. American Legion (2-2), 7-0
June 24 Schedule (All times Eastern)
7th place: PONY (0-4) vs. Dixie (0-3-1), 10 a.m.
5th place: Babe Ruth (2-2) vs. NABF (3-1), 1 p.m.
Bronze medal: RBI (2-2) vs. American Legion (2-2), noon
Gold medal: AABC (3-0-1) vs. USA Stars (3-1), 4 p.m.