After a runner-up finish in the 2019 Central California Cal Ripken State Tournament last weekend in Clovis, CA, the San Luis Obispo 10U All-Stars qualified for the Pacific Southwest Regional Tournament.
The Regional will be held from July 14-20 in Honolulu, HI.
“A lot of our kids have never been on a plane before so we were really excited to get our ticket to Hawaii,” SLO manager Brian Riley said. “We’ve been working really hard, practicing ever since. We’re excited to represent San Luis Obispo in Honolulu.”
SLO’s quest through the 16-team State Tournament field was a dramatic one.
The 10U All-Stars rallied from a 7-0 deficit to defeat Lodi in the quarterfinals 11-9 and dug out of a 4-0 hole in the semifinals to top Visalia. They completed the victory with a fly out/throw out double play at home plate in the final inning, cutting down the potential go-ahead run. SLO then fell to Hanford in the championship.
“It felt amazing like it wasn’t even real because we’ve never been there,” SLO shortstop Jackson Esparza said. “The last two years we haven’t even gotten to state. The first year we did but we got crushed, and the second year we didn’t make it. Now in the third year, we get to go to the semifinals.”
“I’m extremely excited because I get to be with all my friends and play baseball, the sport I love,” SLO second baseman Leyton Stevens added. “Yeah, it’s just going to be a fun experience playing in Hawaii.”
SLO will see its first action in Honolulu on July 14 with a skills competition and will begin its games on July 15.
If you would like to help SLO on its journey to Hawaii, visit the SLO Youth Baseball Aloha Travel Fund.
Axel Forster Johnson
Brian Riley (Manager)