CMWS 2015: East Cobb enters final four with 14-5 win over Louisiana Elite in Game 18
FARMINGTON — Three teams named the "Yankees" qualified for this year's Connie Mack World Series. After Wednesday night's win, the team from Marietta, Ga., is the last one left standing.
Much like Prairie Gravel did to D-BAT Elite in Game 17, the East Cobb Yankees attacked the Louisiana Elite Yankees right off the bat, scoring seven runs in the bottom of the first inning and going on to win 14-5 in Game 18 at Ricketts Park.
The loss eliminates Louisiana Elite, of Mandeville, La., from the world series. Its final record was 24-8.
"We were aggressive, and we've been trying to play that way more and more," East Cobb coach James Beavers said. "We saw some good pitches, and we were hitting them, especially in that first inning."
The first six East Cobb Yankees to step to the plate scored runs in the first.
Carter Kieboom and Joey Bart each notched two-RBI doubles, and left fielder Tucker Maxwell blasted a two-run home run over the right field wall to give East Cobb the early lead.
Connor Bates, a Louisiana State University at Eunice commit, was the Louisiana Elite starting pitcher and fell victim to East Cobb's first-inning onslaught.
After allowing the first four batters to reach base, coach Cole Catalano pulled Bates before he registered a single out. Catalano said Bates had an off day.
"Bates is a soft-throwing lefty who can throw three pitches for a strike, and he's been great for us this year. (East Cobb) just put a few barrels on him," Catalano said. "This one outing doesn't justify the type of pitcher he is."
Louisiana Elite didn't lay down after the explosive East Cobb first inning.
By scoring twice in the second inning and three more times in the third, Louisiana Elite fought back from an 8-0 deficit to make it 8-5 after three.
The five runs weren't all reflective of East Cobb starting pitcher Cody Worthy's performance. Louisiana Elite managed to get five base hits and two walks in the second and third combined, but Worthy's defense didn't help him much in those innings.
East Cobb made four errors on the day, including two in a row in the third inning. Kyle Schimpf and Evan Pace benefited to reach base, and both scored in the third.
"A lot if it wasn't (Worthy's) fault. We booted a couple balls at third base and kind of looked like we never fielded a ground ball before," Beavers said. "(Worthy) did everything we asked of him, we just didn't play good defense today."
Up by only three runs in the bottom of the fifth inning, East Cobb's bats finished as hot as they started.
Kieboom, who committed two of East Cobb's four errors on the day, more than made up for his poor defensive day by clubbing a three-run homer to cap a five-run fifth inning and trigger the eight-run run rule.
"I had a rough day in the field today, but I think I kept my composure," Kieboom said. "I look at every game as two different games. I don't let my defense dictate my performance on offense and vice versa."
Kieboom also walked and doubled in his four at-bats on Wednesday. On the home run ball, he said he got the pitch he was looking for in a good hitter's count.
"I got lucky, I went up 2-0 right off the bat and (Louisiana Elite pitcher Tyler Pigott) kind of left one up in the zone, and I was able to take care of it," Kieboom said.
Now one of the final four teams remaining in the tournament, East Cobb (52-5) will play the Southern California Renegades (42-6-2) at 5:15 p.m. today in the semifinals.
East Cobb Yankees
Leading hitters: Carter Kieboom, HR, 2B, BB, 5 RBI; Joey Bart, 2B, 2 1Bs, 3 RBI; Tucker Maxwell, HR, 1B, BB, 2 RBI
WP: Cody Worthy
Louisiana Elite Yankees
Leading hitter: Travis Swaggerty, 2B, 1B,
LP: Connor Bates