Steelheads impress at Black Tie Bash, now No. 3 in the state


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The Northern Humboldt Steelheads 14U baseball team placed second at the annual Black Tie Bash in Stockton this past weekend, finishing 3-1 at the prestigious two-day NCTB tournament which featured some of the top Majors and AAA programs in the state.

The North Coast travel team won both pool games on Saturday and advanced as the No. 3 seed to Sunday’s Gold Bracket, winning a semifinal matchup against the Cali Roosters from Tracy, 5-2.

In Sunday’s championship game, the Steelheads fell to the Growlers Baseball of Sunnyvale 4-1, but held their high-flying offense to their lowest run tally of the season.

The Steelheads won Saturday’s opener against The Yard out of Elk Grove 8-2.

Lorenzo Solares and Miles Oliver each pitched well in the win, while Matteo Copp, Willie Bommelyn, Elam Wright and Oliver each had big hits.

Defensively, Bommelyn made a highlight reel diving catch in left field and Wright threw out two Elk Grove baserunners on steal attempts.

Wright had a big weekend for the Steelheads, catching 23 out of 28 innings for the team.

In Saturday’s nightcap, Ray Rusgrove got the win on the mound against the Oakland Wildcats.

Oliver, Brody Mattz and Hank Phifer led the way at the plate, and the Steelheads stole nine bases, two each by Phifer, Mattz and Jaden Lack.

Copp got the win on the mound in Sunday’s opener, with Oliver posting the save.

Cedar Cline and Bommelyn each had two hits.

Cline also pitched well in the championship loss to a 13-0 Growlers team that had scored at least seven runs in every game this season.

After the tournament performance, the Steelheads are now the No. 3 ranked AAA team in California.

They play two additional NCTB tournaments in October, as well as the USSSA Fall State Championships in mid November.

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