Midnight Suns take fifth place at Washington state 12-and-under tournament

Posted: Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The Juneau Midnight Suns 12-and-under baseball team took fifth place at an Amateur Athletic Union regional qualifier tournament in Lacey, Wash., over Labor Day weekend.

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The Suns finished 3-1-1 in the tourney.

On Sept. 3, Juneau finished the tournament with a 9-7 victory over the Gig Harbor Rip Tide.

"The tournament was the best I have been too," Juneau coach John Grummett stated in a press release. "They were turf infields with grass outfields and portable mounds. It was like a field of dreams for our young players. And the tournament staff went out of the way to make us feel at home."

Dylan Johnson, Ryan Kelly and Jackson Lehnhart all pitched in the win. Gus Swanton, Kyle Gould, Jeffrey Pusich and Kelly had hits for Juneau. Pusich delivered a two-run double to deep right-center field in the win.

On Sept. 2, Juneau split a pair of games in Washington.

The Suns opened with an 8-1 victory over the Aberdeen M-80s. Swanton, Derek Brobst and Jackson Pavitt had RBI hits while Christian Gould, Marc Heifetz and Kyle Gould limited Aberdeen to the one run.

In the second game, the Suns rallied from a four-run, first-inning deficit to take a 5-4 lead but ended up falling 9-6 to the Demarini Bulldogs.

"You know you're in for a game when the opposing coaches wear full uniforms for a 12-and-under tournament," Grummett stated. "Our kids showed a lot of heart by competing against a team that had a record of 79-19 going into the tournament."

The Bulldogs eventually won the overall tournament.

The Suns defeated the Rainiers 4-3 in eight innings on Sept. 1 as Dylan Johnson drove in Christian Gould with the game-winning run.

Pusich and Jack Grummett threw a no-hitter through five innings before the Rainiers struck for three runs in the sixth.

The Suns opened the tournament with a 3-3 tie against the hometown Lacey Badgers on Aug. 31.

The Suns led 3-0 in the sixth before Lacey rallied to tie the game. Time expired on both teams, forcing the draw.

Kelly, Lehnhart and Christian Gould pitched for the Suns while Lehnhart, Heifetz and Kelly provided the hits.

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