Jun 28, 2012 - By Craig Blumenshine, Staff WriterLeague officials announced Wednesday that Riverton will not field any Babe Ruth all-star teams this year.
Under smoky skies, the Riverton Babe Ruth Rockies pounded 17 hits and plated 18 runs in the third and fourth innings to beat the Phillies 21-8 and claim the league championship Wednesday at Riverton Babe Ruth Park.
It was the fourth time the two teams had played this year, but it was the first time the Rockies had beat the Phillies.
For the Phillies, it all came down to depth of pitching staffs. The team was forced to play its third game in three days because the league had scheduled final regular season games for Monday, the day before the league tournament was set to begin.
"We're just out of pitchers. We put (starting pitcher) Josia Washington in a tough position," said Phillies coach Brian Hughes. Washington also pitched during Tuesday's semifinal game.
The Phillies beat the Cardinals on Monday, in their final regular season game, and again on Tuesday. The Rockies had Monday off but advanced to Wednesday's championship by beating the Giants 11-9 Tuesday.
"(The Rockies) should thank the Cardinals. They took us deep both nights," Hughes said.
The home team, Phillies, plated five runs in the second inning and took a brief lead with key hits from Washington, Austin Walker and a long fly ball from Teron Doebele.
As the third inning started, it was all Rockies, and before the game was over, Brandon Draper, Devin Matsen and Tyler Matsen all crossed the plate three times. Winning pitcher Josh Oaks contributed offensively with four RBIs, and David Gard reached base four of his five at bats. Doebele finished the game with three hits for the Phillies.
But it was the Rockies' thunder from the plate that was key to the championship win.
"In three more weeks, we would be a baseball team," Rockies coach Mike Gard joked late in the game.
The local championship contest will be the last Babe Ruth game played in Riverton this season because league officials announced Wednesday that Riverton will not field any all-star teams in any of the 13- to 15-year-old age groups.
Despite the setback, the coaching staff of the Phillies was pleased with the season.
"There is no quit in these kids. They are wonderful. Our 13-year-olds especially stepped up," Hughes said.
Although there was no formal awards presentation, the Rockies gathered on the field after the game for a team picture before going to eat pizza.
"It's all about the fun we are having," said Rockies coach Fran Lajeunessa.
Oaks went the distance for the Rockies, and Ty Woodward relieved Washington with two outs in the fourth inning and also pitched the fifth inning for the Phillies.
Darryl Fullerton and Jeff Madrigal assisted Hughes with coaching duties with the Phillies this year.
Phillies 0 5 2 1 0 - 8 6 5
Rockies 2 1 8 10 0 - 21 17 6
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