Columbus majors team stretches perfect record to 20-0

By: 
Mikaela Koski
Thursday, June 21, 2018

Photo by Breanna Rhoten
          
            Top row, left to right: Hunter Zabransky, Koleman Garriet, Colter Chamberlin, Ethan Hulsey, Diya Karamzadeh, Coach Travis West. Bottom row, left to right: Graycen Waltner, Mason Dean, Bridger Wilks, Logan Kettenacker, Jim Wayland, Ethan West.

The Columbus Little League boys’ majors team is perfect. The nine and 10-year-olds on the Engineering West team, coached by Travis West, know how to get it done. During the regular season, the team faced opponents from Laurel, Huntley, and Billings 19 times, and each time the Columbus boys came out victorious. At the close of the regular season, the Columbus team’s unblemished record earned the group an important advantage going into the Tournament of Champions (TOC) – the opportunity to play on their home field. The Columbus team is guaranteed home field advantage throughout the tournament, as long as they keep winning.

FIRST ROUND

Rainy weather postponed the first round of TOC twice. The dark clouds finally broke on Tuesday and the Columbus team played Burlington from Billings. In the opening innings, play was tight. The score broke open in the bottom of the third inning, when a 1-1 tie stretched to a 4-1 Columbus lead. The Columbus bats were on fire, and the team’s tough base-running kept Burlington on its toes while racking up extra bases that turned into additional runs for Columbus. In the fifth inning, Columbus batted through its order and put up seven runs to ensure a 14-2 victory. The game ended on a heads-up double-play by shortstop Ethan West. After catching a line drive, West tagged the runner returning to second to officially add another win to the team’s 19-0 record. With Tuesday’s first round victory, and the 20-0 record, Columbus is only three games away from a perfect season. The upcoming TOC games are scheduled for 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday. The tournament is single elimination. At the time of publication, the Wednesday game had not yet taken place. If Columbus can continue its winning ways, by next week the players will have earned the well-deserved title of TOC Champions.

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