LOVELAND, Colo. – The Colorado Sparkler Juniors is regarded as one of the top 14u tournaments in the country each summer. To finish 10-0 and knock off another undefeated team in PS33 Academy in the championship game is downright impressive.
That’s exactly what All-Out 04 from Tuscaloosa, AL did Sunday afternoon at Barnes Complex on its way to claim the 14 Open Gold Championship 13-9 in front of a raucous crowd of family and friends, many of whom drove 18-plus hours to be in Colorado for the tournament.
“It means everything for us to win this,” said head coach Brett Smith. “Coming here from Alabama and not really having any expectations against 138 teams and then to go undefeated. I am so proud of my girls.”
Instead of chants of “Roll Tide” coming from the Alabama faithful it was “Lets Go Scoot”! That’s right, Trinity “Scoot” Wilkinson had herself a game scoring five runs, two doubles, a single and a home run.
“Trinity Wilkinson is probably one of the top 14u players in the nation. She may not get the recognition she needs, but this kid hit about eight home runs this week and batted over 565. She has been very huge to our success,” said Smith.
All-Out combined for 20 hits in the game and trailed 5-3 heading into the fourth inning. With two outs the Alabama team recorded five runs on eight consecutive hits to jump ahead 8-5.
“We preached all week to score every inning. We knew it was going to be a shootout with this team. They hadn’t gave up many runs all tournament, so it was key for us to score every inning we could.”
The team added one more run in the fifth off a deep home run over the centerfield fence by Wilkinson to lead 9-6 after five.
“I knew it was going to be a tough game, but I kept telling my team that we can do this,” said Wilkinson.
All-Out would give themselves a little bit more cushion adding one run in the sixth and three more in the seventh. PS33 looked like they were going to make it interesting in the bottom of the seventh scoring three runs, but a stellar defensive effort by All-Out ended the game.
Starting pitcher Mimi Gooden threw all seven innings and held the PS33 offense to one of their lowest outings of the tournament.
“It means the whole world to my team to win this especially our pitcher (Mimi Gooden). She pitched her butt off and our offense was locked in. I am so proud of our girls,” said Wilkinson.