SCOTTSDALE, AZ-- 520 Elite further cemented its reputation as the top travel ball organization in Tucson by sweeping the 2011 West Labor Day Classic at Salt River Fields, spring home of the Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks.
520 Elite won both the 18u and 16u divisions, with their two teams combining to go 11-0-1 and outscore their opponents 72-25. The 18u team went 7-0 and capped off their run with a 7-1 victory in the championship game over the other pool winner of the 18u division, the Arizona Valley Dogs.
Ace lefty Treyton Stender
(2012 Ironwood Ridge HS, Tucson, AZ) threw a complete game and was an unearned run in the 7th inning from a shutout. Stender allowed just 3 hits while striking out 8 and didn't issue a single free pass in the victory. He also helped his own cause by going 2-for-3 with an RBI at the plate. The championship game was Stender's second outing of the tournament, having thrown 4 shutout innings in the opener, in which he limited the AZ Colts to just 1 hit.
Stender's impressive performance made the MVP decision very difficult, but ultimately he was edge out by teammate Alex Robles
(2013 Tucson HS, Tucson, AZ). Robles went 7-for-17 (.412) with 2 doulbes, 2 triples, 7 Runs, 5 RBI and 2 SB, while playing exceptional defense at shortstop. Robles also ran his fastball up to 84 mph during his 4 innings of work on the mound.
(2013 Ironwood Ridge HS, Tucson, AZ) also made a strong case with a big performance in the championship game and by posting a line of .438/.474/.625 with 3 doubles, 8 R, 5 RBI, and 2 SB for the tournament.
The 16u team tied their first game of the tournament, 4-4 against the Arizona Wildfire West. After that they were a different team, outscoring their opponents 30-6 the rest of the way. When they fell behind 1-0 in the top of the first inning in the semifinals against the AZ Prowlers, winners of the 2011 Desert Classic
, it was the only time they trailed since. They answered that deficit with a 4-run outburst in the bottom of the first and rolled to a 7-1 win in the semis.
The 16u title game was a bit more tense than the 18u edition, as the game was scoreless midway through the 4th inning. That's when the 520 offense sprang to life. Ryan Ramsower
(2014 Salpointe Catholic HS, Tucson, AZ) leading off the inning with a single. He was followed with an RBI triple by Colby Wilson
(2014 Salpointe Catholic HS, Tucson, AZ) the very next at bat. Greg Bambauer
(2014 Cienega HS, Tucson, AZ) continued the hit parade by singling home Wilson as 520 used back-to-back-back hits for all of the run support that LHP Vincent Tarantola
(2014 Sahuaro HS, Tucson, AZ) would need. Though they would add another run in the inning when TJ Snyder
(2014 Cienega HS, Tucson, AZ) singled home Bambauer. And they would tack on another pair of insurance runs in the 5th.
Wilson was named the 16u MVP by going 7-for-14 (4 BB) with 2 doubles, a triple, 5 R and 7 RBIs, including what proved to be the championship winning RBI.
ABD Nevada also had a strong showing, making the playoffs in both age divisions, with the 16u team finishing in second place.