Sunday was a beautiful day for baseball, if was being played in Northwest Indiana.
The Schererville Shock wasn't graced with such weather at the Babe Ruth 15-year-old Ohio Valley Regional in Marinette, Wis. But it overcame a five-hour rain delay in the semifinals before rolling over Northwoods, Wis., 10-0, in the final, earning the team its second Babe Ruth World Series berth in three years.
Against Somerset/Pulaski in the semis, the Shock led 3-1 after four innings before the rains came. When played resumed, Sumerset/Pulaski rallied for four runs in the fifth to go up 5-4.
Trailing into the bottom of the seventh, Bo Hofstra doubled home Ben Nisle to tie the game before Davin Moseley's two-out single to right field scored Hofstra for the game winner.
Against Northwoods, the Shock loaded the bases twice in the second and third innings but failed to score while clinging to a 2-0 lead. Finally, Schererville rallied for eight runs in the fourth before the game was slaughter-shortened after five.
Nisle got the win in the championship, yielding just two hits. Hofstra had two doubles, and was named MVP of the championship game.
The Shock advance to the Babe Ruth 15-year-old World Series, Aug. 20-27 in Longview, Wash.
The Cal Ripken 11-year-old (50/70) OVR played more than 600 miles south of Marionett in Elizabethtown, Ky., as also plagued with weather issues as the start of Crown Point's semifinal game against Meade County, Ky., was delayed about five hours.
When the teams finally took the field, Crown Point was forced to come from behind to get to the championship, battling back from a 4-0 deficit to win 6-4.
In the final against South Eastern Lexington, Ky., Crown Point spotted its foe a little too much of a lead, losing 9-2.
"Our kids played with a lot of heart, and all 13 of them contributed," Crown Point manager Bob White said. "We're definitely a comeback team ... we've done it before.
"We've just got to give credit (to SE Lexington). They got on us a couple of innings, and then played flawless defense to stay ahead."
White said he is thankful that the Crown Point Cal Ripken League allowed them to enter as a 50/70 (pitching distance/base path distance) team this season.
"Our team definitely has the speed to play at those distances," White said, "and our kids seem to love it."
For several other local Ohio Valley Regional-qualifying teams, the weather wasn't the problem, just the final scores.
At the Cal Ripken 10-year-old OVR in Newburgh, Ind., Crown Point lost to eventual champion South Eastern Lexington, 16-7 in the semifinals on Sunday.
Crown Point earned the No. 3-seed in the tournament and a first-round bye after going 2-1 in pool play. On Saturday, Crown Point defeated Mooresville, Ohio, 9-6, to advance to the semis.
SE Lexington went on shutout Mattoon, Ill., 3-0, in the championship.
At the Babe Ruth 13-year-old OVR in Elizabethtown, Ky., Crown Point was knocked in the opening round of the single-elimination bracket Saturday with a 10-0 loss to Franklin Simpson, Ky.
Crown Point's 14-year-old team also suffered an early first-round knockout Saturday after falling to Owensboro, Ky., 13-2, at the Babe Ruth 14-year-old OVR in Henderson, Ky.
Owensboro eventually advanced to the finals, where it lost South Eastern Lexington, 6-5, in eight innings.
At the Cal Ripken 12-year-old (60-feet base paths) OVR hosted by Crown Point, the hosting Bulldogs lost in the quarterfinal of the single-elimination bracket to Bayport, Wis., 4-1, on Saturday.
Last week, the Hammond Hurricanes punched their ticket for the Babe Ruth 16-18 World Series, to be held in Ephrata, Washington, Aug. 7-14. The team had defeated South Bend Harris, 5-2 at the 16-18 OVR held in Dodgeville, Wis.
The St. John All Stars will play in the Cal Ripken 9-year-old OVR running Thursday through Sunday in Jeffersontown, Ky.