2009-08-14 / Sports

Bronco squad from Simi wins PONY World Series

Simi Valley has won the World Series.

When will the parade begin?

The Simi Youth Bronco AllStars won the PONY baseball World Series by defeating Brooklyn, N.Y., 7-3 on Tuesday at Monterey.

“It’s a huge accomplishment for Simi Youth Baseball as a league,” said Jay Lucas, an assistant coach with the Bronco All-Stars. “It’s a super special group of kids.”

The title was the first for any Bronco squad in league history.

Consisting of players aged 11 and 12, the All-Stars spent seven weeks compiling a 27-1 record and outscoring their opponents, 282-71.

The World Series champions are Blake Rutherford, Lorenzo Perez, Easton Lucas, Matthew Campbell, Kyle Ohanian, Tommy Costello, David Gaydos, Adam Jamal, J.T. Watson, Griffin Mazer, Jordan Athey and Terrell Tate.

Ed Perez managed the team, and he was aided by coaches Tom Costello and Jay Lucas.

Simi Valley’s stars also overcame adversity en route to a championship.

Rutherford fractured his arm and missed two weeks of action at shortstop. Lorenzo Perez, a catcher, played with back pain all summer and also missed a few games. Pitcher and outfielder Easton Lucas missed a tournament after getting 14 stitches in his foot.

“The World Series was the only tournament where we had 12 healthy guys who were all able to play,” Jay Lucas said. “It took all 12 to win.”

The squad won a first-round Region tournament in Simi Valley, then Super Region and West Zone tournaments at Whittier to earn the trip to Monterey.

Simi Valley lost its World Series opener to Chinese-Taipei, 4-3, before reeling off five straight wins to claim the title.

“We peaked at the right time,” Lucas said. “We had a lot of dedicated kids practicing on early mornings and sometimes after school ended. . . .

“With this group, it was all about the team.” — Eliav Appelbaum

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