- Special Sections
- Public Notices
Rocky Tucker will carry the events of June 19 with him for the rest of his life.
Tucker spent the majority of the day with his wife, welcoming the arrival of their child before turning his attention to helping guide his Grant County Dodgers past the Grant County Tigers in the championship game of the Major League tournament.
After watching his team open the first inning with a 1-0 lead, Tucker sat back and watched his team cruise to an 11-4 victory and the championship.
"We played great, we played as a team and we played hard. It all came together for us at once. We pitched well and our bats came alive. We have a great team, and I am so proud of every member of our team," said Tucker.
The victory in the championship game capped what had been an otherwise dismal season for the Dodgers.
"We won our first game and went on downward spiral. It was tough, but when we started playing teams outside of Grant County, we began playing better and I knew coming into the tournament, we were playing good baseball. We never gave up and we continued to make improvements," Tucker said.
The improvements were evident early against the Tigers as Drew Tucker ripped a single and moments later was brought home as Greg Collins recorded an RBI.
However, the Tigers battled back in the second inning, as D.J. Bennett laid down a bunt, allowing Wyatt Glass to slide in under a tag at home plate. Devon Cummins followed suit with an RBI single, scoring Bennett and giving the Tigers a 2-1 advantage after two innings.
The Dodgers tied the game at 2-2 in the third inning, but the true damage was done in the top of the fourth inning as the Dodgers sent 10 batters to the plate, scoring five runs on five hits and stranding two on base.
Tanner Orth led off the inning with a single and scored moments later. With two outs, Ryan Chapman lined a single and scored on a double by Seth Adkins. Following a walk issued to Tucker, Greg Collins drilled a single and Jordan Saylor was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Ryan Turley cleared the bases with a double, pushing the Dodgers' lead to 7-2.
Again, the Tigers would not go away quietly as Glass led off with a single and Wyatt Beach brought Glass home on a single. D.J. Bennett added the second run of the inning, hitting into a fielder's choice to score Beach, cutting the deficit to 7-4.
The Dodgers tacked on another run in the top of the fifth inning and added three more in the sixth inning.
In the sixth, the Dodgers sent nine batters to the plate, scoring three runs on three hits to end the game.