Tournaments | Championship | 7/10/2020

Knights Platinum Claim 18u World Series

Perfect Game Staff        
Photo: Knights Baseball Platinum (Perfect Game)
HOOVER, Ala. – In the 18U World Series at the Hoover Metropolitan Complex, Knights Baseball Platinum came out on top of the field after a very hard-fought tournament. They defeated Rawlings Arkansas Prospects by a score of 10-2 in the championship game to claim the title. 
Both teams had a long and very difficult road to the championship game: Rawlings Arkansas defeated a talented team, VBA Black 6-5 in the semi final matchup. They were led there by virtue of 2 RBI on a triple and a home run from outfielder Kyle Booker, who is committed to play at the University of Tennessee in the fall. Also with RBIs were Arkansas commits Ethan Bates, Cayden Wallace, and Clayton Gray. The designated hitter,committed to play for Indiana, Joe Reid knocked in a run as well. On the hill to start the game was Lindenwood University commit Eli Stoops, who went five innings allowing one hit and two runs. Hard throwing right-handed pitcher and Arkansas commit Jaxon Wiggins came in to relieve Stoops. He allowed four hits and three runs in two innings pitched and got the save with his fastball topping at 94mph.

As for Knights Baseball Platinum, they defeated another tough team, Next Level Baseball 5-3 in their semi-final matchup. Wabash Valley College commit Jase Mizell led the offense, hitting two doubles which resulted in two RBI. Also with two RBI was Belmont commit Mason Landers. Memphis commit Jackson Cothren started the game on the mound, throwing 2.2 innings giving up four hits and three earned runs. It was lights out from there when left-handed pitcher and Tennessee commit Jake Fitzgibbons came in relief for Cothren, throwing 2.2 innings, giving up no hits and no runs, striking out four, with his fastball maxing out at 90 mph. Tennessee Tech commit Shane Craig earned the five out save, throwing 1.2 innings, giving up no hits and no runs.

The championship matchup was not as close as the semi-finals, as the Knights jumped on Rawlings starter Rhett James in the second inning when they got bases loaded with no outs. Memphis commit Brennan Dubose grounded out for the first RBI, and soon after Tennessee-Martin commit Carson Deer knocked in two with a single. James was able to work his way out of the jam, striking out the final batter of the inning and leaving runners on second and third. James went 4.1 innings, giving up four hits and four earned runs. The Knights starter, Calhoun College commit Solomon Washington was nothing short of dominant, throwing 4.1 innings, giving up one hit and one run as well as striking out five. Washington is a hard throwing right hander whose fastball can get up to 93-94 mph with some really nice run to it. He can take it down to the high 70s as well with a nasty slider.

After a 1-2-3 first inning, Washington pitched a brilliant second inning as well while protecting a 3-0 lead. He walked the first two batters before retiring three straight, striking out two. In the fourth inning, Joe Reid brought a run in for Rawlings, but they left runners on second and third. In the fifth inning, Rhett James was relieved by Oklahoma State commit Marcus Brown, who gave up six runs on four hits in 1.2 innings. Tournament MVP Jase Mizell broke the game open in the sixth inning, crushing a three-run home run to left field, making the game 10-1 and putting it out of reach. Mizell hit .533 in the tournament with eight hits and five RBI. The MV Pitcher of the tournament was Rawlings Arkansas’ Ethan Bates. Bates threw eight innings and only gave up four hits while allowing no runs for the tournament. He throws an 85-87mph fastball. The primary shortstop is set for a very bright future as he prepares to head to Fayetteville in the fall to play for coach Van Horn.

-Michael Brauner
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