The Brownwood Giants completed an undefeated TTAB 12U District 4 tournament run with their second victory of the week over the Brownwood Mariners, 12-2, Wednesday night to punch a ticket to state.
By virtue of the Giants' five-inning run-rule triumph, the Brownwood squad is bound for the TTAB 12U Open Base state tournament in Whitehouse beginning July 15.
After slipping past the Mariners, 9-8, and the May Tigers, 6-5, in their previous two outings, the Giants jumped out to an early lead in the championship game at the Massey Sports Complex.
Aided by a pair of Gavin Brandstetter two-run homers, the Giants tallied the first 10 runs of the game. Brandstetter also pitched 4.1 innings, recording eight strikeouts, before giving way to Dario Rodriguez, who recorded the final two outs.
The Giants grabbed a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning when Antonio Ybarra reached on a one-out walk and Brandstetter followed with a towering two-run shot over the center field fence.
In the second inning, the Giants stretched the lead to 6-0. Martin Nava reached on a single to left field then Grant Gray was hit by a pitch. Ybarra ripped a two-RBI double to center field to plate Nava and Gray ahead of Brandstetter's line drive, two-run home run over the left field fence.
Another four-spot in the fourth inning allowed the Giants to increase their lead to double digits. Gray led off with an infield single, then Ybarra and Brandstetter walked to load the bases. A bases-loaded walk by Robbie Rodriguez plated Gray, then Dario Rodriguez followed with an RBI ground out that brought home Ybarra. Brandstetter scored on a wild pitch during Michael Badillo's at-bat, while an RBI fielder's choice by Cameron Aultman scored Robbie Robinson.
The Mariners kept the game alive in the bottom of the fourth by scoring their only two runs. Jorge Martinez and Noah Gonzalez led off the frame with back-to-back singles then, with one out, Garrett Moody singled to right field to knock in Martinez. With two outs, Mason Esquivel came through with an RBI single into right field that scored Gonzalez.
The Giants answered with two runs in the top of the fifth to reclaim their 10-run advantage. Ybarra reached on a one-out error, Brandstetter walked and Robbie Robinson's RBI ground out scored Ybarra. A wild throw from first to third base after the out against Robinson was recorded allowed Brandstetter to come home with the final run of the game.
Austin Wright doubled with one out in the bottom of the fifth for the Mariners, but they were unable to scratch across another run and extend the game to a full six innings.