McKinleyville Seniors crowned District 26 TOC champs

Submitted photos – The Mack players celebrate their championship at the Arcata Ball Park on Tuesday night.

McKinleyville’s A&I Roofing won the District 26 Senior League Tournament of Champions at the Arcata Ball Park on Tuesday night after defeating Redwood Empire 5-3.

Tate Saso hit a key two-RBI single in the bottom of the fourth inning to break a 2-2 tie, while pitcher Hunter Carper had another big performance on the hill.

The Mack champs closed out the season with a record of 15-3, but it was the resiliency and the way the players came together in the face of adversity that most impressed their coaches.

“The camaraderie they showed throughout the season was my favorite part,” head coach Conrad Coelho said. “We have a great fighting spirit. We lost one of our better players (Teddy Yarbrough) though injury halfway through the season and we kept our spirits up. We really fought every game.”

Carper led the team in RBIs this season and had two home runs.

He drove in two runs in Tuesday’s championship game and also dominated on the mound.

“He was amazing,” Coelho said. “He pitched a really good game.”

Rhythm Green also has impressed for the TOC champs this season, including pitching a memorable no-hitter two weeks ago.

This year’s team also featured a wide range of players, from first-year players to players who have been playing since they were 6, and they all contributed.

The experienced Yarbrough was batting an impressive .450 when he was sidelined for the season, but never gave up on his teammates.

“He was there supporting us the whole time,” Coelho said.

The 2023 District champs also included Blake Santos, Jake Brunner, Conner Tatman, Levi Coelho, Becker Rine, Lynnsey Chamley, Caden Crook and Ryker Hoff.

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