Brayden Stuart hit a grand slam to help PCLL pick up PCLL’s only state tournament win.
Palm Coast Little League 11U’s state tournament run didn’t go as planned, but the boys found an exciting way to end it on a high note.
After dropping their first two games — 9-3 to Viera and 1-0 to Sarasota — the little leaguers won their final game 23-18 over Oviedo on Saturday, July 15, at the Chipper Jones Little League Sports Complex in DeLand. The win was the first ever on-the-field victory for any PCLL team.
“Our boys were very competitive in every game,” head coach Doug Berryhill said. “We hit several balls very hard right at them or just a little foul. In the final game, the boys broke through. A legitimate fifth-place finish at the state tournament is an achievement that all of Palm Coast and Flagler County can be pleased with.”
Palm Coast little leaguers competed in every game played. In their 9-3 loss, they trailed by two runs going into the fifth inning, and they gave up a run on an error in the 1-0 loss to Sarasota, which played in the championship.
With bases loaded and PCLL leading 8-4 in the fourth inning of their final game, Brayden Stuart hit his first ever grand slam to put Palm Coast up 12-4.
“It felt great to hit my first grand salami,” Stuart said. “I was thinking I just wanted to get a hit and score some runs, but a home run wouldn't be too bad either.”
Palm Coast finished fifth in the state out of 336 little league teams.
“Throughout the tournament, our team made tremendous baseball plays, and our players competed on every pitch and every play,” Berryhill added. “PCLL 11U demonstrated an ability to play a high level of baseball against premier competition. It was quite the experience.”