Ten East County Junior all-stars, and two from Bridge of the Gods Little League, feasted on their competition at the District 4 baseball tournament.
The Panthers rallied from a 4-1 deficit to defeat Fort Vancouver 12-4 in the championship game Thursday, at Hockinson Meadows Park. They scored 10 runs between the third and fifth innings on a combination of walks, clutch hits and errors.
Kaden Corbitt delivered three hits and drove in three runs. Alex Orr knocked in two runs on two hits. He also pitched four scoreless innings of relief. Orr allowed his only hit in the seventh inning, before ending the game on a strikeout.
East County-Bridge of the Gods beat Columbia-Evergreen 13-3 July 7. The Panthers broke a 3-3 tie by scoring seven runs in the fifth inning and three more in the sixth.
The Panthers sent 10 batters to the plate in the fifth. Kirk Brown ignited the outburst with a 2-run double. He finished with three hits in the game. Orr added two hits and 3 RBI. Noah Merino had a double and drove in two runs. Corbitt racked up 10 strikeouts in 5.2 innings pitched.
East County-Bridge of the Gods earned a 10-1 victory against Fort Vancouver in the first game of the tournament July 6.
Bridge of the Gods pitcher Brandon Connell struck out 15 batters in 5.1 innings. Fort Vancouver scored its only run on a ground out in the sixth.
Jason Powell put the Panthers on the scoreboard with a 2-run single in the second inning. They scored three more runs in the third and fourth innings.
All 12 hits in the game for the Panthers were singles. John Miner and Zach Jones each had two of those hits, along with Powell.
East County-Bridge of the Gods enters the state tournament Saturday, at Glenwood Little League, 9001 N.E. 119th St., in Vancouver. The event runs through Saturday, July 25.
East County Little League President Jennie Brown announced that John Miner, a 14-year-old from Washougal, received the Austin Wolford Award.
“John was nominated because of his exceptional teamwork, the encouragement that he gives to every player on his team, and his sensitivity in mentoring younger players who need some confidence,” Brown said.
A year ago, Wolford, 19, died in a swimming accident at Yale Reservoir, in Cowlitz County. His parents, John and Cindy, are still active in Little League District 4. The award in Wolford’s honor is given to a player in each division who embodies the values of Little League: character, courage and loyalty.