The Clovis Cal Ripken 9U All-Star baseball team has earned the title of State Champions after defeating the Visalia Cal Ripken team 3-2 on June 27.
The 11-player team is made up of 9-year-olds selected from 10 teams in the Clovis Cal Ripken division. So far, the team has played together for about six weeks and looks to extend its time together by continuing its winning streak.
Team coach Rus Hartmann remarked on the level of play his athletes have performed at, particularly on defense, having allowed just four runs through the State Tournament.
“I’m extremely impressed with how well they’ve played for this age group,” Hartmann said. “I’m excited for the boys to continue playing, and for them to get the opportunity to play teams from different places.”
The next stop for the team is the Pacific Southwest Regional Tournament in Hanford from July 15-20.
The team will play its first three games against teams from Northern California, Arizona and Hawaii.
Hartmann also said he is happy the team will get to spend more time with each other and the team member’s families, who he said have been “phenomenal” throughout the team’s championship run.