|State Champions: Sulphur Springs 7-8-year old Coach Pitch team wins Dixie State Tournament|
|From Staff Reports|
July 15, 2005 - PITTSBURG - The trophy and the banner say it all: State Champions.
The Sulphur Springs 7-8-year old Coach Pitch team blazed through the Dixie State Tournament unbeaten this week, culminating in Thursday's 4-0 win over Grand Prairie in the state championship game.
The Wildcats went 5-0 in the tournament with bookend shutouts - one in their opening game and another in their finale.
"Our kids played unbelievable defense," said SS head coach Robert Cody. "We didn't make an error in the championship game. To go through five innings of coach pitch ball and not make an error or allow a run is pretty amazing.
"Everybody contributed. They played another wonderful game."
It was the Wildcats' second win over Grand Prairie after they gave the metroplex team their first loss on Tuesday night.
Sulphur Springs scored two runs in the first inning and added two more in the third.
In the first, singles by Cain Cody, Kade Hudgins and Aaron Smith loaded the bases in front of Larry Pryor Jr., who singled home one run, and Will Sant, who drove in another with a double. Smith was thrown out trying to score on hit, but the Wildcats had a 2-0 lead.
Then, in the third, Cody and Hudgins went deep, back-to-back. Cody belted a solo homer to right field, and Hudgins hit a solo home run to left-center to make the score 4-0. Pryor and Sant both singled later in the inning but couldn't come around.
Then, in the fourth, Sulphur Springs threatened again with singles by Joseph Moreno and Hunter Crowson, but didn't score.
The Wildcats had all the runs they would need, thanks to an air-tight defense. Cody had two putouts and five assists at first base, Landon Brock came up with four putouts at shortstop, and Hudgins had three at third base.
Second baseman C.J. Stephens also made two key catches, Cody said, including a leaping grab of a line drive in the top of the fourth inning to keep Grand Prairie off the scoreboard.
Ben Brooks caught a fly ball in left field and Sant, at catcher, gloved a foul pop behind the plate.
At the plate, Hudgins, Cody, Pryor and Sant all went 2-for-2, while Smith, Moreno, Crowson and Tyler Williams were 1-for-2.
After the game, the Wildcats were awarded a 3 1/2-foot tall trophy and a banner, while the players all received medals and trophies.
"It was a big night for the kids, and we couldn't have asked for more supportive fans and parents," Cody said.