GREENFIELD — Jaden Thomas pitched a two-hit shutout to lead the Riley 9U Travel All-Stars to the 2013 Cal Ripken Central Indiana Babe Ruth League tournament title Sunday at James Whitcomb Riley Park with a 3-0 victory over Shelby County in the championship game.
Thomas struck out five and walked only two in the six inning game. He also had excellent defensive support from his teammates, who collectively committed only one error.
Riley scored in the first and third innings. In the first, Gabe Owen reached first on an error and scored on Rylan Schneider’s triple to right field. Tyler Will walked to open the third inning and crossed the plate when Shelby County misplayed Thomas’ infield roller. Owen’s triple brought home Thomas for the final run of the game.
Riley advanced to the title game by eliminating New Palestine in a Sunday morning semi-final contest, 11-1. The game was shortened to four innings by the 10-run rule.
Owen, who pitched the first three innings, and Jackson Toberman combined to allow New Palestine only one hit.
Meanwhile, Riley’s bats were smoking. Schneider got three hits, Thomas and Owen had two apiece, Blake Steidel had a double and Toberman, Matt Gambill and Blaze Schultz each singled.
As a result of the two victories, Riley 9U qualified for the Ohio Valley Regional to be played in Connersville during the first week in August.
* Thomas a winner — At Kokomo, Kevin Thomas Jr. won the second Indiana Sprint Week feature in U. S. Auto Club action Saturday at Kokomo Speedway.
Thomas led the final 20 turns to take the 30-lap main. Wes McIntyre was second and Dave Darland took third and was fast qualifier.
Darland was the leader in the sprint and Sprint Week point totals going into Sunday’s race at Lawrenceburg Speedway with Terre Haute being the fourth stop on Wednesday.
Gary Taylor and Tyler Hewitt flipped in the first heat race. Hewitt was taken to a hospital for treatment of a broken shoulder and ribs.