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Tournaments : : Story
Farrah Builders On Course in Kernels Tourney
Jim Ecker        
Published: Monday, September 20, 2010

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa -- A team from New Jersey hopes its path to Florida runs through Iowa.

 

No, the Farrah Builders Scout Team did not take a wrong turn in Jersey and end up in the midwest by mistake. They came to Iowa this weekend to compete in the Kernels Foundation Championship, with an eye on winning the title here and earning an automatic spot in the WWBA World Championship that will be held in Jupiter, Fla., in late October.

 

They're just two victories away.

 

Farrah Builders spanked Longshot Baseball-Teal, 12-0, in four innings in the quarterfinals Sunday night at Perfect Game Field and will play in the semifinals Monday morning against the St. Louis Gamers or Ann Arbor Travelers.

 

Frank Montalvo, the skipper of Farrah Builders, has taken a pair of teams to Jupiter for the World Championship over the years. He'd love to go again.

 

"I feel the squad I have this year deserves to go," he said Sunday. "I hope they get a shot."

 

All 40 teams in the Kernels Foundation Championship had to battle wet, soggy conditions in Iowa during the weekend and Perfect Game had to modify the format due to rain, but the tournament is on track to finish Monday afternoon.

 

The Kansas City Bullets nipped the St. Louis Pirates, 1-0, in another quarterfinal Sunday night and will face either Cangelosi Silver or the Reds Midwest Scout Team in the other semifinal Monday morning.

 

Montalvo has 15 players on his roster this weekend, and they took different paths to get here. Some of them flew from Newark to Chicago to Cedar Rapids, and others flew from Philadelphia to Minneapolis to Cedar Rapids. Some did neither.

 

"We had four kids drive," said Montalvo. "That was a 13-hour ride."

 

They hope to make it pay off today.

 

"It's a good bunch of kids," said Montalvo. "They're having fun, and they're loose right now."

 

Farrah Builders went 3-0 in Pool Play with a 6-4 victory over Minnesota Blizzard Blue, a 14-0 triumph over Sioux Empire, and a 4-2 win over the Giants Scout Team '11. They've outscored their four opponents, 36-6, heading into the semifinals.

 

Most of Farrah's players are from New Jersey, but they brought a good hitter from Staten Island, N.Y., on the trip and they're glad they did. Kevin Krause, a senior at Tottenville High School, has been the team's leading batter so far.

 

"He's just been mashing the ball all weekend," said Montalvo. "If we win it all and he doesn't get MVP, something is wrong. He's been our RBI guy."

 

Krause, listed at 6-foot-1, 175 pounds, hit a home run at Perfect Game Field on Saturday.