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October 25, 2016

Apopka Lightning Strikes Gold at GSA - Brandon Roberts MVP

SSBM was reporting at the Global Sports Alliance Tournament 14U Extreme Challenge in Winter Haven Florida this past weekend. Twelve teams entered Saturday's Pool Play which determines whether teams make the gold or the silver bracket for the Sunday final. And you know the kids want to go for the gold. Number 1 seed Tampa Tomahawks, Tampa Tribe Blue, Program Pursuit, NT Jaguars and two Orlando area teams Baseball Plus and Apopka Lightning made it to the Gold Bracket in that order.
Apopka Lightning found them selfs going into Sunday last seed with one less player as Vincent Cotroneo suffered an injury. The Lightning 3-way player suffered a severe wrist injury while trying to stop a ball at the catcher position. He's a tough kid and only expected to be out for a couple weeks. Let's all wish him a speedy recovery.

First order of business on Sunday for the Lightning was Program Pursuit a local area powerhouse team. Lefty Grayson Adams took the hill. This was a tight game going back-and-forth and the score was tied in the fifth inning. With two Pursuit runners on base Grayson was gassed. Coach Jason Adams called on Tyler Michael who came in to stop the rally. He also came out in the in the next inning and kept the Pursuit off balance. On this day great defense helped the Lightning. In the bottom of the sixth, score tied with time expired Jacob Mackey was on second base with Macho Matos at the plate. He delivered with a walk off hit and the Lightning won 4 to 3.

The next step in the semi finals Coach Adams called on his other lefty Matt Prevesk to pitch against the team that only the day before beat the Lightning 8 to 1. Against a strong hitting Tampa Tribe team behind great defense and great hitting the boys prevailed winning 8 to 1. This game the Lightning jumped out early and never look back with key hits by Jose' Class, Josue Matos, and Brandon Roberts. In the fourth inning with the score 7 to 0 - Matt hit an inside the park homerun with a crushing blow in the gap in right center field making the score 8 to 0. In the following inning Seth Kelly came in to relieve, stopped a rally and close the game for a big victory. The Lightning went on the to the championship.

The championship game was all about pitcher Brandon Roberts. The Tampa Tomahawks coming in as the number one seed had rolled through every other team in the tournament. The game was tied 0 to 0 until the top of the third inning when the Lightning bats came alive. Key hits by Steve Presley, Jacob Mackey and Seth Kelly provided the spark needed for the top of the lineup hitters to drive them home. The Lightning scored 3 runs in the third and 1 run in the fourth. Then it was time to play defense and rely on Brandon on the hill. The Tomahawks are a strong hitting team and claw their way back and had two runs by the sixth inning. In the sixth inning with men on first and second nobody out the crowd was biting their nails. Coach Adams called time because he saw something and pulled all the boys in around the pitchers mound. On the next pitch Brandon wheeled around for a pick off, Matt snuck over to first base and caught the guy sleeping on first. The following hitter came to the plate hitting a line shot to Tyler who tossed over to Macho and just like that the threat was gone. Brandon came back out in the seventh striking out 2 and got the final hitter with a soft ground ball and the Lightning won 4 to 2.

The overwhelming choice for the MVP of the tournament was Brandon Roberts. He only allowed two runs on two hits while striking out six and only walking one in 7 innings work. Matt Prevesk provided power at the plate all weekend going 6 for 10 with 4 walks, 9 RBI and 1 HR. All the Apopka Lightning team played great defense and we heard one of the boys say, "we won this one for Vinny!" After the game Coach Adams said, "this was a team effort with all the boys rising to the occasion when they were needed the most."
Congratulations to the Apopka Lightning! Sunshine State Baseball wants to thank the folks at Global Sports Alliance. The Extreme Challenge event attracted teams from all over Central Florida from 12 to 16 years old.

Game On!

April 10, 2016

2016 USSSA Beach Bash Champions - Apopka Lightning

Exciting action all weekend in Ormond Beach Florida where top 13U teams came to battle it out for the 2016 USSSA Beach Bash Championship. After playing great on Saturday pool play the Apopka Lightning found themselves top seed going into championship Sunday.

In game one the Lightning squared off against the Daytona Panthers. They jumped out to an early 3 to 0 lead on RBI hits from Matt Prevesk, Jose Class and Josue Matos. The Lightning picked up another run in the fourth inning. Jacob Mackie pitched 5 and 1/3rd innings and got great defensive plays by Macho Matos and Caleb Anderson. The Panthers came back with three runs in their half of the fifth inning. With the score 4 to 3, Grayson Adams came in to slam the door on the Panthers and the Lightning moved on to the championship.

In the other semi final the North Florida Hurricanes from Jacksonville FL beat the Empire Elite from Melbourne FL 8 to 5. The stage was set. One day earlier saw these same two teams battle it out and the Lightning won by one run.
The final game was a back-and-forth battle between two great hitting teams. Grayson Adams took the hill for the Lighting. He pitched a strong performance but in the top of the forth, a couple miscues and 4 Hurricane hits saw the Lightning down 9 to 5. In the bottom of the forth the Lightning bats came alive scoring eight runs. Key hits by a double from Matt Prevesk, Jose, Brandon Roberts and Mason Morello lead the charge. The Hurricanes came back in the top of the sixth scoring 3 to tie the score 12 to 12. Both teams held in there next two at bats. Leading off in the bottom of the seventh, Matt Prevesk launched a bomb over the centerfielders head. The Fences in Ormond Beach were 400 feet straightaway centerfield and this was one hop against the fence. Matt motored around all four bases for an inside the park walk off Home Run. Coaches Jason Adams and Ron Anderson were proud of the way the boys battled all weekend long. "It was a great team performance." said Jason.

There were many great games over the weekend and we hope that the winning teams will post their information on our visitors page at Sunshine State Baseball. A big thanks to all the parents and coaches for all of their hard work. Catch all the action at SSBM. For information on how to get your team or son profiled call us today.

Tournament Updates

Apopka Lightning: Missing from the picture this Vincent Cotroneo. Left to right standing: Steve Presley Brandon Roberts Seth Kelly Jacob Maki Matt Prevesk and Grayson Adams kneeling left to right Josue Matos Tyler Michael Macho Matos and Jose' Class Jr. In the background you can see Coach Adams Coach Roberts and Coach Presley with smiles on their face after a big win