Follow-the-leader is a fun kids’ game … in the house, in the yard, in the park.
Anna Davis plays a little different version, and so far the 11-year-old golfer has been the perpetual leader, on the course and in the clubhouse.
Davis spends summers with the family, including twin brother Billy, in Chewelah while living the school year in San Diego where her parents, Bill Sr. and Beatriz, are educators. And so far the summer of 2017 has been more eventful than usual.
Oh, she and Billy, who have been playing golf since age 5, continue to be age-group winners in Washington Junior Golf District 5, but this year she stepped it up a notch.
On June 28, Anna shot a 2-under-par 70 over 5,393 yards from Chewelah Golf and Country Club’s red tees to set the women’s course record. The old mark of 71 was set in 2002 by Lisepte Carter Durkin.
The record came just days before Anna and Billy won Washington State Junior Championships in the 8-11-year-old division in the Tri-Cities. It was the third straight state junior 8-11 title for Anna and the first for Billy.
“How fortunate we are to be in Chewelah and (involved) in Washington Junior Golf,” said Bill Sr. “We’ve had a home (in Chewelah) since the 1990s and have a lot of friends here; a lot of really nice people who support the kids.”
Spokane Expos Red found the walk-off route a nice path to the 13U Division 2 championship of the Triple Crown World Series Aug. 1-6 in Steamboat Springs, Colorado.
After going 3-0 in pool play to earn the No. 4 seed into the 10-team, double-elimination bracket, Expos Red sandwiched walk-off wins around a couple of lopsided victories en route to the title and a 7-0 record in the 19-team tournament.
Trailing 8-6 in the bottom of the fifth inning of their first game, Nick Chase (Post Falls) hit a grand slam that gave Expos Red a 9-8 victory in a game ended by time limit. Under tournament rules, the grand slam was credited to Chase, but his run wasn’t counted for the team, which didn’t need it to win.
Two walks and a bunt single by Carson Coffield (Mountainside) had loaded the bases for Chase.
Wins of 14-5 and 11-1 kept Spokane unbeaten and put it in the championship game against the top-seeded team, Central Valley Arsenal from the Sacramento, California, which had to fight its way through the losers’ bracket after losing its first game.
It turned out to be a battle worthy of a title game. Spokane led 6-5 going into the top of the seventh only to see Arsenal get a home run to tie it.
In the bottom of the seventh, Dawson Blunt (Clarkston) singled with two outs and stole second, where he watched Ricco Longo (Spokane/home school) prevail in a 10-pitch at-bat to deliver a single between third and short that scored Blunt with the winning run.
Chase and Cruse Hepburn (Lewiston) combined to pitch the victory, striking out six.
It capped a 51-10-1 season for Expos Red, which traveled extensively throughout the Northwest this summer. They outscored their tournament opponents 82-38.
The other Expos Red players – Aiden Tibbetts (Northwest Christian), Josh Hansen (Evergreen), Cruse Hepburn (Lewiston), Killian Fox (Lewiston), Kadin Williams (North Pines), Dom Longo (Spokane/home school), Timmy Brummett (Bowdish), Kaleb Glaze (Orofino) and Cooper Hansen (Yakima). The coaches – Geoff Tibbetts, Eric Hansen, Dom Longo and Chris Brummett.
Nineteen home runs, 127 runs, a 7-2 record and 9th place among 104 teams.
A pretty good week for the Spokane Valley Royals 12U team in the American Youth Baseball Hall of Fame Invitational Tournament at Cooperstown Dreams Park in Cooperstown, New York, last week.
The Spokane Indians Youth Baseball 12U city champions went 5-1 in pool play, outscoring its opponents 90-35, to take the No. 18 seeding into single-elimination play.
After 17-9 and 13-1 wins in their first two games, the Royals ran into the No. 2-seeded SLO Tigers from California in the tournament’s Sweet 16. The Royals grabbed a 3-0 lead in the first inning thanks to home runs from Ayden Mansfield and JT Wilson, but the hard-hitting Tigers surged to a 14-7 victory, despite another home run from Wilson, to eliminate the Royals.
Wilson (Bowdish) and Stuart Carruthers (St. Thomas More) each had four of the Royals’ homers during the week while Mansfield (home school) and Kruz Wheeler (Chase) added three apiece as eight of the 12 players contributed to the total. Wilson had a team-leading 20 RBIs, Mansfield added 18 and Carruthers led the way with a .778 batting average.
On the mound, Mansfield had 17 strikeouts in nine innings and Aaden Anderson (Greenacres) had 12 in 11 innings as the Royals wound up outscoring their nine opponents 127-59.
A perk of the event is that the team was inducted into the American Youth Baseball Hall of Fame and the players and coaches received hall of fame rings.
The other Royals players – Zach Engh (City School), Tyler Boden (Horizon), Drew Stevens (Horizon), Ayden Nishimura (Bowdish), Max Woolf (Evergreen), Mason Heberlein (Evergreen) and Matthew Salas (Mountain View). The coaches – Ryan Stevens, Dan Engh and Jason Nishimura.