It was a summer to remember for a group of young Del Norte all-stars who enjoyed a history-setting campaign and set a new standard for their program along the way.
Fresh off their recent district championship, the Del Norte 8-10 All-Stars traveled to La Grande, Oregon, to compete in this week’s Oregon State Tournament, where they impressed on the way to a third-place finish.
It was the furthest any Del Norte 8-10 All-Star team has ever gone.
“They’re a very gritty team,” manager Tyler Bachmann said. “I had lots of people say that about them.”
The young Del Norte players set the tone earlier in the summer with a 4-0 run through the Oregon District 8 Tournament, which was held in Crescent City.
The hard-hitting DN all-stars dominated the tournament and outscored their four opponents — the Medford Nationals, Rogue River, Central Point and Brookings — by a combined score of 63-7 to qualify for the state tourney.
They opened in La Grande on Saturday with a 10-3 loss to Bend-South, although the game was close until late, thanks in large part to a strong performance by young pitcher Mason Lindsay.
The Del Norte players responded to the loss with a hard-fought 5-3 win over Medford American on Sunday and followed that with victories over North Portland (20-7) and West Salem (5-2) on Monday and Tuesday.
Their historic run finally ended on Wednesday, when they fell 10-3 to Bend-South while playing their fifth game in five days.
“I’m very proud of them,” Bachmann said. “They went further than any other Del Norte 10-year-old team has gone. That’s a good mark they set for other teams. I’m really proud of them for what they did.”
Pitcher Chase Bachmann got the start against Medford American and allowed just two hits in four innings while striking out seven.
At the plate, Chase Bachmann and Teagan Good led a seven-hit team performance and each hit a key double, while teammate Manuel Contreras finished 2-for-2.
The Del Norte players carried that momentum into Monday’s showdown against North Portland, which they ended after five innings on the 10-run rule.
The Del Norte bats exploded for 14 hits in the win, with Chase Bachmann influential again and finishing 2-for-3 with a double.
Check out the final out of Tuesday’s game …
Jase Price-Lewis, Hudson Jacot and Lindsay each also had a pair of hits, while Contreras and Louis Moorehead combined on the mound to give up just three hits.
They continued to roll on Tuesday and won their third straight elimination game in a close showdown with West Salem, a victory that guaranteed them a top-three finish.
Ramirez got the start and helped set the tone, allowing just two runs on four hits and striking out two in 3.2 innings against a “very good West Salem team,” according to his manager.
Price-Lewis threw the final 2.1 innings and gave up just one hit, while Ramirez and Jacot each were 2-for-3 at the plate.
“It’s been a very fun summer coaching them and I am very excited to see them continue to progress as this group gets older,” Tyler Bachmann said.
Middle infielders Ramirez and Chase Bachmann both were “exceptional throughout the tournament” on defense, according to their manager, while outfielders Jay Land Jr. and Moorehead both also made some big plays for their team.
“They’re a young group that’s eager to learn the game,” Tyler Bachmann said. “They’re really willing to soak up everything we tell them.”
Charles Mavris, Isiah Brunson and Barrett Whitford each also played key roles this week for the team, as did assistant coaches Steve Bachmann and Casey Duncan.