Facing other squads from the Protect Our Nation’s Youth league (PONY), the Brentwood Blast’s 10U team is excelling at the regional playoffs in San Jose. On Tuesday, the Blast defeated Vacaville 20-11 in a grand showing of offense. Shortstop Cooper Gardner went 3-for-3 with two walks; centerfielder and pitcher Steven Kerr finished 4-for-5. Catcher Jeff Heinrich contributed three hits while first baseman Caleb McCurdy got on base twice on singles.
“They’ve been on an incredible streak,” Coach Scott McCurdy said. “The special thing about this team is that they really rally as a team.”
Scott noted that the team fought through some adversity when tied 3-3, but rallied to score eight runs before the inning came to a close. The Blast 10U team played again on Thursday and will wrap up the regional tournament this weekend.
The youngest Blast team – in the 6U Shetland division – is also looking forward to some tough competition. The 6U claimed the title in the sectional playoffs in Rodeo and moved on to the western finals in West Covina, near Los Angeles. In the sectional bracket, the 6U team faced teams from Natomas, Tera Hills, Rodeo and Pittsburg. The western finals will start Monday.
Two other Blast teams – the 8U and 12U – have already concluded their seasons. In the recent western finals, the 8U Blast won two games, but ended with a tough 4-3 loss to Los Alamitos. Coach Mark Petures was impressed by the way the team played, despite being together for a little over a month. Prior to the western finals, the 8U Blast swept its regional tournament in Pittsburg and went to San Pablo, posting a 5-1 run in the PONY World Series.
At the most recent tournament – the western finals – Nathan McCurdy hit .730 in four games, while Ethan Ulrich and Markus Petures each contributed three home runs and 11 RBIs.
In the sectional tournament, the 12U team ended its season with a 3-0 loss at the hands of Bel Passi, a team from the Modesto area. Pitchers Stirling Strong and Jason Andersen each came away with a win, defeating Ceres and the Brentwood PONY All-Stars.
The loss ended a successful season for the 12U Blast, which went 45-14 throughout the season and claimed a title in the Cooperstown All-Star Village World Series.