The Hamilton Huskies, a youth baseball team from Chandler, are headed to the Babe Ruth Baseball 14-year-old World Series after winning the Pacific Southwest Regional Tournament on Saturday in Herriman, Utah.
The World Series takes place Aug. 22-29 in Appleton, Wisc. It is the Huskies' second trip to the World Series in three years. The 2007 team won the 14-year-old national title in Glen Allen, Va.
At the Pacific Southwest Regional, the Huskies defeated Westchester, Calif., 8-2, in the championship game.
Skyler Palermo pitched a complete game for Hamilton, with seven strikeouts. The key hit for the Huskies was Kyle Pechloff's two-run single in the fifth inning that snapped a 2-2 tie.
Palermo, Pechloff and James Ziegler were chosen for the all-tournament team. Ziegler hit seven home runs during the five-game tournament and was chosen tournament MVP.
Ziegler was not alone in the hitting department. In a game against Hayward, Calif., on Wednesday, the Huskies belted 10 home runs.
“I have never seen a group of players at this age level hit so well,” said Larry Merrix, president of the Arizona Babe Ruth League.
Team manager Tony Valdez credited his team’s success to an emphasis on conditioning.
“The first six practices are devoted to conditioning” Valdez said, “so that the players are in shape to absorb the bumps and bruises that come through to the end of the season.”