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Special to The Sun
The Washington County Stars competed in the 2008 Marion County Invitational Tournament July 25-27 and brought home the championship trophy.
WC took the #1 seed in Pool A and picked up wins in both semi-finals and the championship game. Sunday’s three-game single elimination round had fielding excitement, pitching challenges, and a few come-from-behind hits that helped WC overcome Anderson, Marion and Adair counties to bring home the hardware.
WC against Green County was a pitchers’ duel through five innings without a score as Matthew Bartley battled against Trey Estes. In the bottom of the sixth Thomas Spalding singled, John Riney was walked, and Bartley hit a three-run homer for the win, 3-0. Bartley was the winning pitcher.
WC against Russell County was an offensive frenzy with 12 hits in four innings. Wade Moore and Spalding each had three hits, while Bartley, Riney and Adam Krey each had two hits in the 12-0 win. Spalding was the winning pitcher.
WC against North Lexington was another offensive outburst in five innings. Spalding, Riney, Bartley and Luke Mattingly had two hits each in the 11-1 win. Bartley and Riney combined to throw a one hitter.
WC picked up a win against Anderson County in a come-from-behind win for the stars. Anderson scored first with two runs in the first inning and then two more in the third. WC came back and scored two runs in the second inning.
Spaulding hit a solo home run, and then Riney got on base with a walk before Bartley hit a homer for the final two runs in the 5-4 win. Moore, Bartley and Krey each had two hits, and Bartley was the winning pitcher in relief.
WC against Marion County was another tough game against a strong opponent as Bartley fanned 15 batters in a two-hit, complete game shutout.
The final score was 3-0, with Spalding and Bartley picking up two hits each, including a home run by Spaulding.
WC faced Adair County for the championship in a game that was played just 40 minutes after the win over Marion County.
Adair scored twice in the first inning to lead 2-0 early. WC battled back, scoring once along the way to trail 2-1. They posted a sixth-inning, two-out rally as Riney and Bartley singled, putting the winning run on first in the form of Bartley. Jared Young singled, and with an error by Adair’s infield, both runners scored, ending the game and clinching the championship.
Spalding was the winning pitcher, and Bartley had three hits and a home run. Spalding, Riney and Krey had two hits each.
The members of the team were Thomas Spalding, John Riney, Wade Moore, Travis Mattingly, Matthew Bartley, Adam Krey, Dallas Feinwick, Jared Young, Evan Mattingly, and Luke Mattingly. They were coached by Jim Mattingly, Leonard Abell, and assisted by Jerry Mattingly and Chris Spaulding.
For six of these boys it was their last time to compete in the 11-12 year old Little League level, and some took a final lap round the bases as they savored the victory with a championship trophy.