KREBS — The Legends got a big hit from one of their littlest hitters, then turned to their biggest pitcher to lock down a Pittsburg County Little League championship.
Jett McClendon’s two-out pinch-hit single sparked an eight-run inning for the Legends, and starting pitcher Jaxon Rodriguez struck out nine in five innings to give the Legends a13-2 run-rule win against the Stars in the Big 13 championship Saturday at Deerinwater Field in Krebs.
“We were the No. 4 seed when they started,” Legends coach Josh Hass said. “And so to come back and win our way back, yeah, we’re feeling pretty good.”
McClendon’s single came with two outs, the Legends up 2-0 and the bases loaded in the top of the third inning. Stars pitcher Cache Stone quickly got to two strikes against McClendon — an 11-year-old playing in a league filled with 12- and 13-year-olds — but McClendon fouled off a couple pitches before slapping a single into right field.
Gunner Hass and Cole Crabtree both scored on the play for a 4-0 lead. McClendon later scored on an error, then added an infield single in the fourth inning to finish 2-for-3 with two runs batted in and a run scored.
“I was stoked for Jett,” Josh Hass said. “He hadn’t swung the bat real well all year, and he came in when we needed him. ... That was the key play of the game.”
Greg Quintana kept the Legends’ third inning going with a single, then Rodriguez bounced one towards shortstop. A solid throw to first would’ve ended the inning, but instead the ball bounced in front of first base and rolled into foul territory, scoring two runs on the error.
Quintana got to third on Rodriguez’s grounder, then scored on a wild pitch. Junior Jones walked, Rodriguez scored on another error, then Gunner Hass doubled to center field to drive in Jones.