Community Sports

Cal Ripken baseball teams ready to compete for state title

Ferndale's shortstop Kobe Sandstrom snags groundball during last year’s Northwest Washington 11U Tournament on Thursday, July 10, 2014, at Conoco Phillips Sportsplex Baseball Fields in Ferndale.
Ferndale's shortstop Kobe Sandstrom snags groundball during last year’s Northwest Washington 11U Tournament on Thursday, July 10, 2014, at Conoco Phillips Sportsplex Baseball Fields in Ferndale. THE BELLINGHAM HERALD

The 2015 Cal Ripken 12U State Baseball Tournament is set up differently than previous years, but the result is greater opportunity for more kids to play competitive baseball.

The tournament is bringing the Whatcom County youth baseball community together under one charter, so kids from any town can be a part of the team and not be disadvantaged if they are from a place with a smaller pool of players to choose from, said tournament director John Sandstrom.

“The reason is that smaller communities before were not getting enough kids together to be able to compete at the state level,” Sandstrom said. “But now the ones that want to have the chance to compete.”

The Whatcom Americans and Whatcom Nationals teams are hosting the tournament, and are made up of kids from the Bellingham, Blaine, Ferndale and Meridian School districts.

Eight teams from the Northwestern parts of Washington will compete for the title of state champion during the four-day tournament beginning Thursday, July 9, and ending with the semifinal and championship games Sunday, July 12. Games will be played in Ferndale at the Phillips66 Sports Complex.

“If you want to see some good baseball, these are some of the best 12-year-old kids in Washington state,” Sandstrom said.

Building the county-wide teams has been a little difficult, as it resulted in breaking up teams that played together in previous years, and brought others into the mix who have never played together.

“For the long run stability of building the program in Whatcom County, this will help the teams be more competitive,” Sandstrom said.

While the competition is strong, the tournament is also meant to be a fun time for players who are entering into a new level of competitive baseball, and for families who come to support the teams.

The always-popular opening ceremony will take place between 9-9:30 a.m. Thursday, when a Color Guard will perform, a helicopter will fly by and Washington State Baseball Hall of Fame Coach Gary Hatch will throw the ceremonial first pitch.

This tournament has the opportunity to open doors to unmatched levels of competition for young baseball players.

The winner of this tournament will go on to the Pacific Northwest Regional Tournament in Meridian, Idaho. The winner there will advance to the World Series in Arkansas.

Sunday's date was corrected July 9, 2015.

2015 Cal Ripken 12U State Baseball Tournament

Where:

Ferndale, Phillips66 Sports Complex

When:

Thursday, June 9 - Sunday, June 12

Teams:

Lynden, Ellensburg, Othello, Mount Vernon-Conway, Forks, Whatcom Americans, Whatcom Nationals

Tournament schedule

Time

Teams

Field

Thursday

  

11 a.m.

Forks vs. Whatcom Americans

D&D Insurance

11 a.m.

Mount Vernon-Conway vs. Othello

Inside Pitch

1:30 p.m.

Lynden vs. Ellensburg

D&D Insurance

1:30 p.m.

North Olympic vs. Whatcom Nationals

Inside Pitch

4 p.m.

Forks vs. Othello

D&D Insurance

Friday

  

10 a.m.

Mount Vernon-Conway vs. Forks

D&D Insurance

10 a.m.

North Olympic vs. Ellensburg

Inside Pitch

12:30 p.m.

Whatcom Americans vs. Othello

D&D Insurance

3 p.m.

Ellensburg vs. Whatcom Nationals

D&D Insurance

3 p.m.

Lynden vs. North Olympic

Inside Pitch

Saturday

  

10 a.m.

Whatcom Americans vs. Mount Vernon-Conway

D&D Insurance

10 a.m.

Lynden vs. Whatcom Nationals

Inside Pitch

1:30 p.m.

A2 vs. N3

D&D Insurance

1:30 p.m.

A3 vs. N2

Inside Pitch

4 p.m.

A1 vs. N4

D&D Insurance

4 p.m.

N1 vs. A4

Inside Pitch

Sunday

  

10 a.m.

Semifinals

Inside Pitch

10 a.m.

Semifinals

D&D Insurance

1 p.m.

Championship

D&D Insurance

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