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9-10s Opp All-Stars fall

Opp fell to Escambia County Thursday night 7-5 in the district title game. | Adam Robinson/Brewton Standard

BREWTON — The Opp 9-and-10-year-old All-Stars fell to Escambia County 7-5 Thursday night in the Cal Ripken district tournament title game in Brewton.

This was the second district title won by Escambia County.

“It feels great to be district champions,” Escambia County manager Wayne Hammac said. “This is my first year doing this and being a district champion and it brought tears to my eyes to see how well they played and brought it all together. With the bases loaded, I brought a young guy in and he (Cole Brown) is a really good ballplayer.

“But Matt (Hutchins) pitched excellent, and it feels good to me and now I am going to state and it feels better. I just hope we can just raise enough money so everyone can stay and we can have a good time and come back winners on that.”

Escambia County led 7-1 heading into the bottom of the sixth inning before Opp scored four runs to cut the lead to 7-5 with the bases loaded and two outs.

Before Opp scored its fifth and final run of the game, Escambia County was thought to have won the game by a score of 7-4, but a bases loaded catcher’s interference call came late with EC celebrating on the field to load the bases again for Opp with the lead cut to two.

After a passed ball, Opp tried to cut the lead even closer, but was caught stealing at home to end the game with Escambia County winning by two runs.

Overall. Hammac said he thought his team played well Thursday night.

“We executed on our hits and we got down to the last there at the end of the game and I kind of did not like the call there at the last (catcher interference call that extended the game and cut the lead to 7-5) as I thought we had won it but the umpire called a tip,” Hammac said. “But other than that, I thought the guys played hard, and we hit the ball well and scored runs and Matt pitched an excellent game. I don’t think he walked many and other than that he did good. I am really proud of him, and I told the guys that if you get out there and play your hardest and play the best ball you can, we will come out and be winners and that is what happened. I know I am proud of them.

“Before every game we pray and ask God to help us and to play with good sportsmanship, and that is what he did. If you put him first in your life, everything will work out. That is what happened.”

After a pitching duel early that saw no runs through three complete innings, Escambia County scored three in the fourth inning to hold a 3-0 lead and added three more in the fifth.

Opp cut the lead to 6-1 in the bottom of the fifth only to see Escambia County take the run back with one of their own to hold a 7-1 lead heading into bottom of the sixth inning.

Opp scored four runs in the bottom of the inning.

Opp made no errors in the loss while Escambia County made two, but left six runners on base while EC left two.