The Cochrane Peloton Crush U15AAA team didn't flinch when they finished fourth in the round-robin of the River City Classic ball tournament in Kamloops, B.C.
Instead, they rose to the challenge by downing a tough competitor in the semi-finals, then came from behind to beat Stettler in the championship game.
"We gained some confidence out there, and we got some of our newer younger players a lot of at-bats and just the experience in playing in a tournament," says head coach Corey O'How. "We played six games in three days, so we got a lot of ball in and a lot of at-bats, so it was a really good tournament to go to."
They beat the Calgary Cardinals 6-3 in their opening game with pitcher Hudson Harding recording a 3IP with zero runs earned.
They had a 12-0 lopsided win over the Prince George Knights with Bo Anderson going three for three and Charlie Schmitt, two for two in batting. Thomas Hill pitched a 4IP with zero earned runs and Carter Walsh had zero earned runs in one inning pitched.
The White Rock Tritons handed the Crush their only loss of the weekend in a close 5-3 game. Crush pitcher Landon O'How was in for 5 2/3 innings with zero earned runs and 12 strikeouts. Arlo Brubakker-Plitt was two for four in the hits department.
They tied the hometown Kamloops River Dogs, 9-9, with Ethan Moon pitching 3IP with zero earned runs. Braeden Bohach-Murray and O'How both hit three for four.
In the semi-finals, they got redemption against White Rock with an 8-0 win. Bohach-Murray pitched 6 2/3 innings with 11 strikeouts and zero earned runs.
It was an all-Alberta final with the Crush coming from behind to beat Stettler, 7-6.
Bohach-Murray hit three for three with two home runs, O'How was three-for-three and George Evans drove in the winning run in the bottom of the sixth, then the Cubs buckled down and held off Stettler in the top of the seventh for the win. Hill pitched 3 1/3 innings in relief allowing zero earned runs.
This weekend, the triple-A Crush are in Sherwood Park for a pair of league games and head to Okotoks next weekend for four. They'll be hosting teams on two weekends in June.
League play continues until provincials on the August Long Weekend.
"Our goal is to get there and do as well as we can to see if we can get a spot in the Westerns or Nationals later in August."