Steamboat Springs Youth baseball will take Steamboat Springs by storm this weekend as two major organizations host championship tournaments here.
The Steamboat Little League will host this year's state championships for 9- and 10-year-old players. The games will be held today through Sunday at Emerald Park. The tournament has a double-elimination format, so if a second championship game is needed, it will be played on Monday.
"These are the best teams in the state," Steamboat Springs Little League organizer Harvey Lyon said. "It should bring a high quality of baseball to Steamboat."
Four teams from districts 1, 2, 3 and 5 will compete for the title. Games will begin at 4:30 p.m. today at the Little League baseball fields at Emerald Park. The championship game will take place at 10 a.m. Sunday. Games will also be played at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Friday. There will be a consolation final at 10 a.m. Saturday.
Sunday's championships will feature an undefeated team from the upper division and a team with one loss from the lower division. If the undefeated team wins that game, it wins the title. However, if the team coming out of the lower division wins, it will force another game to be played on Monday.
All of the teams playing in the tournament have won their district championship. This week's games will decided who the state's top team in that age group is. Steamboat did not win its district. Instead, Grand County was crowned champion in District 3.
Triple Crown will also bring top young players to Steamboat with the first of two weekend's of youth baseball action. The tournament will feature a record total of 235 teams from 18 different states. There will be 91 teams in the tournament from Colorado.
"Colorado's flourishing youth baseball community will be well represented," Triple Crown's Sean Hardy said. "They are serious title contenders from the state in every age division."
The first session will begin on Wednesday with a skills challenge at Howelsen Hill. Pool play begins on Friday and will continue through Saturday. The tournament will come to a conclusion on Sunday with championship games taking place throughout the day.
The second session will run Aug. 3-6. That tournament will use fields in Steamboat Springs, Hayden, Oak Creek and Craig.
The tournament format will guarantee that each team plays four games. The top teams from each pool will advance to a single-elimination tournament to decide the outright winner.
This weekend's session will feature teams in the 9-and-under, 12-and-under, 14-and-under, 15-and-under and 16-and-under age divisions. The remaining age groups will come to Steamboat for the second session.
Teams qualified for the tournament by finishing in the top three of a qualifying tournament held earlier in the year. There were 45 such qualifying sessions held across the country.
As the host, Steamboat will have a couple of teams awarded spots in the brackets. Steamboat will be represented in the 10-and-under division and the 12-and-under division.
To reach John F. Russell call 871-4209 or e-mail him at email@example.com