Summit American Legion baseball team places second in state tourney
The Summit Tiger American Legion B team closed its summer season with a second-place finish in the regional Legion B State Tournament the team hosted in Breckenridge over the weekend.
“Short of winning a championship, it was a great tournament for our team,” said assistant coach Tai Sposato.
Summit lost in the eighth inning of a tight extra-inning contest to rival Steamboat Springs 12-9 on Saturday.
“We have a friendly rivalry with them,” Sposato said. “For the two of us to end up in the championship is awesome.”
Kyle McCormaick led the way with two home runs in the game, a grand slam and two-run shot. His performance helped earn him the best-hitter award for the tournament.
Summit lost twice to Steamboat in the double-elimination three-day tournament. The other loss came in a back-and-forth game, with the Tigers falling short 9-8.
“Unearned runs are what killed us,” Sposato said. “Our pitchers put us in places to win games.”
After the first loss, the Tigers beat Liberty, from Colorado Springs, 9-3, to earn a rematch against Steamboat in the finals. With the double-elimination format, Summit would have had to beat Steamboat twice to win the championship.
“We had our chances; that’s the way baseball is,” said head coach Tim Spring.
Even with the tough championship loss, it was a strong finish to what Spring and Sposato said was the Legion B team’s best season, finishing 23-14 on the year.
“They’ve never really won this amount of games before,” said Spring, who had faith in his team all along.
At the start of the season he predicted the team, which had finished under .500 in years past, would do well and go to the state tournament.
“When I predicted it, all the parents and kids were surprised,” he said. But he believed in the talent he saw in practice.
Parents and assistant coaches credit Spring, and also the development of the Summit Extreme 10U youth baseball program, for the new-found success of Legion B team.
“It was a wonderful season,” Spring said, also crediting parents’ efforts. “I look forward to next year.”
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