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Pines Panthers Slug Way To Winter Classic 16U Crown

The HSBN 2017 Winter Classic 16U Champion Pines Panthers.

Championship Photo Gallery

The Pines Panthers have enjoyed a nice history of success in HSBN tournament action, and Sunday afternoon they added another accolade to the trophy room in winning the 2017 Winter Classic 16U Championship. The Panthers rallied from a run down with a six-run fourth inning that put them ahead for good, as they went on to a 10-4 decision over the Davie Wildcats.

It is the Panthers’ second straight HSBN tournament title, after they also defeated the Wildcats in the 16U Fall Classic finale. The program has won three HSBN 16U tournament championships overall.

Things did not start in their favor, as the Wildcats (3-1) struck first to take a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning. Nick Dattillio walked and Brayton McDonald and Lucas Perdemo were both hit by pitches to load up the bases starting off the frame. Wilmer Flores got the scoring going with an RBI single to right field, and a balk brought in another run.

The Panthers (3-1) answered back to cut the deficit in half thanks to a run in the second. Tyler Valdes and Greg Garcia walked and Lucas Lopez connected for an RBI double to right field.

The HSBN 2017 Winter Classic 16U Runner-Up Davie Wildcats.

Two innings later the Panthers capitalized on a few miscues to burst out for six runs. Santiago Borcelo reached on an error, Valdes walked and Angel Martinez also reached on an error off a sacrifice bunt play that allowed Barcelo to score. Garcia then reached on a fielder’s choice and Lopez walked to plate another run and keep the bases loaded. Diego Fereira drove in another run on an RBI ground out, Gabriel Perez drove in two with a double to center and Daniel Quinones finished it off with an RBI double to center.

Gabriel Perez also picked up the victory on the mound, after going five strong innings in the start for the Panthers. The right-hander surrendered two earned runs on three hits, while striking out seven, walking one and hitting two batters. Daniel Quinones tossed the final two frames, allowing an earned run on two walks while striking out three.

The Wildcats managed two runs in the sixth to inch closer. Dattillio reached on an error and successfully stole home on a double-steal play, after Perdemo reached on a fielder’s choice and then initiated the sequence. Perdemo then stole third and came in thanks to an RBI ground out from Ryan Calla.

The Panthers iced the victory with three more runs in the top of the seventh. Reggie Williams worked a lead-off walk and Quinones then smacked a double to left. Joshua Suarez walked to load the bags and Barcelo came through with a two-RBI double. Later a passed ball allowed Suarez to cross the plate for the Panthers’ final run.

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