Aug. 13, 2003 – The Virgin Islands Explorers rebounded from two losses on Tuesday to defeat the Scottsdale (Arizona) Blaze, 7-4, Wednesday morning in their final game prior to the start of elimination rounds at the American Youth Baseball Hall of Fame 12 and under tournament in Cooperstown, New York.
The Explorers used a 12-hit attack to dominate the game. They made a solid showing in committing only one error, a throwing error by winning pitcher Shakeem Trotman on a pickoff attempt.
The Virgin Islanders scored two runs in the top of the first, fourth and fifth innings and single run in the second. Carl Bolling was perfect at the plate in three appearances to lead the Explorers' offensive attack. José Rivera also had three hits, in four at bats. Khamal Simmonds had two hits in three plate appearances.
The Explorers' loss of both of their games on Tuesday cost them to drop from fifth seed among the 64 teams competing this week to 17th spot leading up to the tournament. They lost in the afternoon to the Foxboro (Massachusetts) Warriors, 10-3, and at night to the West Coast (California) Prospects in a 5-3 heartbreaker.
With their Wednesday morning win, the Explorers went into the elimination games seeded 16th. Tournament single-elimination play began Wednesday afternoon, with the championship game set for Thursday evening. The Explorers' go into the elimination competition against the Manalapan (New Jersey) Devil Rays at 8 p.m. Wednesday
The Explorers, a team made up of top 12 and under players from St. Thomas and St. Croix, are playing in the ninth week of a 10-week series of tournaments. Each week's winner will return to play in the 11th week for the 2003 championship tournament.
To track the team's action online, go to the Cooperstown Dreams Park Web site.
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