By Scott Stankowski
The Stevens Point 11U baseball team took third place this past weekend in Ripon. The team fought hard all tournament long and fell a run short of the title game.
On Saturday morning they played Watertown. Point jumped out to an early 2-1 lead thanks to wild pitching on Watertown’s part. Point’s combined pitching of Damian Cejka and Nick Helms scattered six hits over six innings to provide a 4-2 victory. Cejka lead the team offensively, getting on base three times and scoring on all attempts as he had a single and two walks. Evan Tuskowski added a double.
In the second game on Saturday, Point went up against Kewaskumm who jumped all over Stevens Point to take a 4-0 lead after the first inning. But Point would not be denied as they came back and were ahead 6-4 after four innings, with Cam McCarrier leading the way with a 2-RBI double. The A’s struck back and took the lead and the game 8-7. Colby Hintz had two hits and scored a run.
Heading into Sunday and the final pool play game, the Stevens Point squad faced Wrightstown and came out with fury. Point’s pitchers combined to throw six innings of four-hit baseball. Helms was credited with the win, going three strong innings with Hintz adding two of his own and CJ Stankowski closing it down in the sixth to take a 12-4 win into the playoffs. Cejka went 2-3 with two RBI, as did Tuskowski and McCarrier, both of whom both added doubles, respectively. Stankowski and Max Kvatek also doubled for the team.
The crew took a #3 seed and faced a rematch against #2 seed Kewaskum. Point jumped out to a 8-0 lead behind the strong performance of Cejka on the mound. But Damian took a sharp come backer to the shin that dropped him immediately and took him from the game.
Point could not find the strike zone in the third inning, giving up nine runs on six walks. As hard as they tried, they still fell short losing 11-9. Stankowski provided a 2-2 performance at the plate with two RBI. Cejka and Helms added doubles.
This pitted the team against the #1 seed Ripon in the consolation match. On the third game of the day, Point had to dig deep in order find the determination to take the win. The crew jumped out to an early 10-0 lead and seemed to be heading into cruise control. Tuskowski breezed through the first inning of ball before leaving the mound after two with a 10-2 lead.
Ripon fought back before Bennett Kscinski took over on the mound and shut the door, securing a 10-9 win and third place honors. Raczek and Hintz both had two hits; McCarrier and Stankowski had two RBI and Tuskowski had three RBI with a double.
Weekend batting highlights are as follows: Point scored 42 runs in five games with Cejka reaching base 14 out of 17 attempts batting .600. Stankowski batted .500 with a .714 on base percentage. McCarrier and Raczek recorded six hits with McCarrier adding 8 RBI. Razor Raczek and Stosh Hintz had a .687 on base percentage. Most importantly, the team came together and had fun while playing good baseball.
The boys have a couple of weeks off before they head to Mosinee for their next tournament.