10U Toros Triumph in Charleston, Win Battle for the Ship

Not since the Siege of Charleston in 1780 has the low country seen the level of domination displayed by the 10U Toros on Sunday, June 23.  Fortunately for America, this time the good guys won.

The journey to the title began with 48 hours of vacation time, most of which was spent debating the merits of Sullivan’s Island versus Isle of Palms.  Both risked being blown off the map from wind gusts that quickly shut down the players’ Wednesday fishing expedition.  Luckily the adults were armed with golf balls and Travis Robinson’s multi-decade love affair with sand golf, a stern test of hand eye coordination that would become celebrated by Toros dads and coaches.  NYO would like to congratulate the following champions from the First Annual Charleston Sand Golf Challenge:

Gold Division Champions: Jeff Taylor, Ken Tittle (aka “The True Champions”)
Double Elimination / Silver Division Champions: Todd “Toro Grande” Page, Rob “Grande Jr” Strang
Saturday Champions: Daniel Kelly, Josh Wolf

At some point during the trip, the boys also began playing a baseball tournament.  The event featured stiff competition from travel teams across five different states.  After a 1-1 start to begin pool play on Friday, including a tough loss to the NCDB Rivercats, the Toros needed to win on Saturday in order to finish in the top six and earn a spot in Sunday bracket play.

Clearly inspired by the dazzling athletic feats displayed on the beach by their parents, the Toros put on a clinic in their Saturday double header.  After routing the Sandy Plains Wildcats 12-4 to begin the day, the team doubled down to beat a gritty Cincy Flames team 12-2.

With a 3-1 pool play record and the #3 seed locked up for bracket play, the Toros returned to the beach for a final afternoon of mischief.  After a storm caused an early end to sand golf and shut down the beach-wide dance party, the players enthusiastically descended on the coaching staff’s rental house. The caloric intake of the ensuing seafood and pizza extravaganza was not approved by either of the Toros team physicians, but it proved to be the right fuel for a run through Sunday bracket play.

Sunday morning began with a rematch against the Cincy Flames.  The Toros jumped out to an early 3-0 lead, which was enough to preserve a 5-2 victory after six innings of dominant Toros pitching and defense.

The semifinals meant a rematch against an outstanding NCDB Rivercats squad.  Fortunately, the Toros were more than ready to redeem their Friday night defeat.  Trailing 4-3 after one inning, the team dug deep to secure a win and guarantee their second trophy of the summer.  The Toros clicked on all cylinders, scoring nine more runs and allowing zero, en route to a 12-4 victory and a trip to the championship game.

The final challenge for our hometown heroes was the pride of Richmond, the #1 seeded and undefeated Rise Baseball.  As in the semifinal, the opposition took a one run lead in the bottom of the first inning, but once again the Toros found an answer.  On the heels of dominant pitching and several key hits, the Toros entered the fifth inning with a 3-2 lead and stepped on the gas.  The hit parade seemed like it would never stop, with nine Toros runs crossing the plate in the final two innings and (unlike sand golf) eliminating any doubt about who deserved the championship.

The Toros finished the game with a 12-3 victory and lifted the championship trophy to cap a complete team effort throughout the tournament.  Not only did the team score the most runs and give up the fewest runs of any team in the four-day event, but every Toro scored at least one run during Sunday bracket play.  Congratulations to the players and coaches for their outstanding performance at Shipyard Park.

Front row: Ty Page, Quill Howell, Lane Taylor, Thomas Strang, Grant Taylor, Luke Moorhead, Hudson Tittle, Miles Braun, Davis Robinson, Harris Young, Jeremy Wolf, Bobby Harpring

Coaches: Daniel Kelly, Austin McNeil, Spencer Middleton