As Perfect Game Park South at LakePoint closes its gates until the WWBA Freshman World Championship, one more team walked out with an automatic paid invitation to the prestigious WWBA World Championship hosted in Jupiter, Fla. at the end of October. The East Cobb Baseball Astros finished off a 6-0 weekend with a 5-0 win over Nelson Baseball School 18u in the WWBA National Qualifier championship game.
It took East Cobb three very difficult playoff wins on Sunday to earn the CHAMPION banner, including a highly competitive championship game against NBS, who had just taken down the top-seeded Homeplate Chili Dogs Maldonado in an extra-inning semifinal matchup.
The Astros set the tone early, however, and great pitching and defense took care of the rest. East Cobb put up the first run of the ballgame in the bottom of the first inning after Reggie Pruitt walked to start the inning and made his way to third base before a ground ball to third base drove him in.
The bats caught fire the following inning for the Astros, as four more runs crossed the plate to give them a 5-0 lead early.
After Malique Foreman reached base with a one-out infield single and worked himself to second base a few pitches later, Kyle Wilkie connected for an RBI single to center with two outs. Brandon Hill immediately followed the trend with a line drive double to left field to make it a 3-0 ballgame. The speedy Pruitt, who scored the game’s first run, tripled off the fence in deep centerfield and Jalen Miller again drove him in with a single to cap off the big inning.
Timely hitting was key for the Astros in the championship, as all four of the team’s runs in the second inning were scored with two outs.
That would be more than enough for the East Cobb pitching staff, as Cameron Allison, Zac Kristofak, Caleb Moore, and Brandon Hill combined to toss a seven-inning shutout while surrendering just three hits and striking out 10.
The pitching for the Astros was outstanding this weekend, as the staff combined for a 0.53 earned run average and 56 strikeouts through 40 innings of work, picking up much of the slack from an offense that hit just .235 (31-for-132).
Although the team combined for a sub-.250 batting average, the bats did indeed come through when hey needed to most.
On top of Johns’ heroics, the Astros struck for five runs in the bottom of the sixth inning of Sunday morning’s quarterfinal matchup to escape TGBA Blue Borcherding, 5-2.
The offense did swing the sticks well in the semifinal matchup against the Georgia Banditos, connecting for nine hits, including five extra-base hits and eight runs en route to an 8-0 shutout. Zach Goodman earned the win on the mound, tossing a complete game five-inning shutout while giving up just three hits and tallying five strikeouts.
The East Cobb pitching and defense held opponents to a total of six runs through six games, while plating 30 runs of their own.
The WWBA National Qualifier win gives the East Cobb Baseball Astros an automatic paid invitation to amateur baseball’s biggest stage. The Cadillac of amateur baseball events, the WWBA World Championship is consistently scouted by an incredible number of college recruiting coordinators and Major League Baseball scouts, giving every kid in attendance a great opportunity for recruitment.
One of the most recognizable names in travel baseball, scouts will surely flock to see the talent East Cobb boasts at Jupiter this year.