OTTAWA — The Streator 10-Year-Old All-Stars put together a nice run in the Little League District 20 Tournament.
Until, that is, that run came to a sudden halt at the hands of the Peru 10-Year-Old All-Stars.
Peru's 10s finished a championship series sweep of the boys in red, claiming the District 20 banner early Monday evening with a 15-4, five-inning victory over the Streator 10s here at Ottawa's Varland Park. Streator — which like Peru went undefeated through its half of the tournament bracket to earn the championship series spot — was outscored 30-10 in the two-game championship bracket, and now heads back home to play in its own annual Harcar Tournament.
"Peru can hit, and Peru is very fundamentally sound," said Streator 10s manager Doug Gassman. "They made the routine plays, they hit and they threw strikes. ... It's just that simple. They're very talented.
"It was definitely a good year, but it seemed like every time we started to put up a rally (in the championship series), something just happened, and it stopped. But that's baseball, that's how it goes.
"Peru's a special team. We are too, and we'll see them again next year and the year after that."
Peru — which moves on to the sub-state tournament hosted by Moline later this week — led throughout, getting going Monday on Geno Dinges' leadoff triple in the bottom of the first and never looking back. Peru scored one in the first (Stuart McGunnigal RBI fielder's choice), seven in the second (run-scoring hits from Connor O'Flanigan, Dinges, Brandon Lamps and McGunnigal) and two in the third (Lamps and McGunnigal RBIs) to build a 10-2 advantage.
Those two Streator runs came in the top of the third thanks to leadoff singles by Will Heider and Maddan McCloskey and a two-run single up the middle delivered by Kamdyn Darrow. Streator's 10s added two more in the fifth when Reece Pelnarsh, Jack Studnicki, Sam Lerette, Jerrad Clarke and Brennen Stillwell drew five straight bases on balls, but Peru ended things via the 10-run rule in the home half of the fifth on Brennan Hirst's walk-off, two-run double to left-center.
"We have a very great group of kids who all take this real serious," said Peru 10s manager Mike Argubright. "During practice, all they want to do is hit and field, hit and field, and you saw the results. ...
"It's just a great group of kids."
The offensive onslaught led by McGunnigal (single, triple, four RBIs), Lamps (single, double, two RBIs) and Dinges (triple, two singles, three runs scored) proved to be plenty for Peru starting pitcher Alec Tomsha (4 2/3 IP, 4 ER, 2 K) and reliever Dinges (1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 K).
Brezdyn Simons (1 2/3 IP, 7 ER, 3 K) was dealt the pitching defeat, relieved by Keegan Gassman (2 1/3 IP, 7 ER, 3 K) and Pelnarsh (1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 K). Darrow drove home two runs and Pelnarsh scored two for Streator, which was held to five hits off the bats of McCloskey, Darrow, Isaac Melvin, Heider and Keegan Gassman.
At Varland Park, Ottawa
Peru 15, Streator 4 (5 inn.)
STREATOR (4) — McCloskey 2b/c 3-0-1-0, Pelnarsh rf/1b/p 2-2-0-0, Darrow ss/rf 2-0-1-2, Melvin cf 2-0-1-0, Clarke c/2b 2-0-0-0, Stillwell 3b/ss 2-0-0-0, Gassman 1b/3b/p 3-0-1-0, Simons p/ss 1-0-0-0, Heider lf 1-1-1-0, Studnicki rf 0-1-0-0, LeRette spr/cf 0-0-0-0, Compton ph 1-0-0-0, Clift lf 1-0-0-0. Totals 20-4-5-2.
PERU (15) — Dinges cf/p 4-3-3-1, Tomsha p/cf 1-2-0-0, Lamps 2b 2-2-2-2, McGunnigal ss 2-2-2-4, Saini 1b 3-2-1-1, Argubright lf 2-1-0-0, Hirst 3b 2-0-1-2, Moreno rf 0-1-0-0, O'Flanigan c 2-1-1-1, Senka ph 0-0-0-0, Heersink ph 1-0-0-0, Cass ph 1-0-0-0, Cowan ph 0-1-0-0. Totals 20-15-10-11.
Streator 002 02 — 4 5 1
Peru 172 05 — 15 10 1
LOB - Streator 6; Peru 6. 2B - Lamps, Hirst. 3B - Dinges, McGunnigal. SF - McGunnigal. SB - Pelnarsh, LeRette, McGunnigal. CS - none.
Streator ip r er h bb k
Simons (L) 1.2 8 7 6 4 3
Gassman 2.1 7 7 4 6 3
Pelnarsh 0.1 0 0 1 0 0
Tomsha (W) 4.2 4 4 5 3 2
Dinges 0.1 0 0 0 2 0
McGunnigal and Saini scored with one out to end the game.