Area Youngsters Compete in MLB Pitch, Hit & Run Contest
by Sandi Fahy
Photo by SANDI FAHY
LARGO - Youngsters throughout Pinellas County were invited to take part in the local Aquafina Major League Baseball Pitch, Hit & Run competition which took place at the Highland Recreation Complex on April 11. The event is a national initiative which gives boys and girls ages 7-14 the opportunity to demonstrate their pitching, hitting and running abilities. The all-around champion and the pitching. hitting and running champions in each age group go on to compete in a sectional competition. Winners at the sectional championship have the opportunity to advance to the team championship level, after which the champions' scores from all 30 team markets are compared to determine the top scorers in each age group nationwide. Finalists will compete in the national finals in St. Louis this summer.
The three divisions of the competition are individually scored and converted to a total point score through the use of conversion tables. Nathan Gustafson scored the most points at the Highland competition to become the all-around champion for ages 7/8. He took first place in both the hitting and running contests and tied with John Dohanl for first place in the pitching segment. In the ages 9/10 division, Matheu Nelson emerged the all-around champ after taking first place in both hitting and running. He tied with Matthew Adams and Jordan Mazzucco for first place in the pitching competition. Desmond Lindsey's pitching, hitting and running skills earned him first place in all three segments and the all-around champion title in the 11/12 age group. Steven Petrilyak, who took home the honor of all-around champion among the 13/14 year-old participants, also won first place in all three events. All of the above named youngsters qualified to compete at the sectional level.
Brian Harter of the Largo Recreation, Parks & Arts Department was coordinator of the local Pitch, Hit & Run competition.
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