Niles Knights capture title in Kalamazoo

Published 1:55 pm Tuesday, May 11, 2004

By Staff
The 14-year-old Niles Knights captured first place in the AABC Spring Classic baseball tournament over this past weekend in Kalamazoo.
The Knights opened the tournament with an 8-0 win over the Kalamazoo Rockets in four innings. Jamie Simpson was the winning pitcher, throwing six strikeouts in three innings of work. Nick Fedore relieved Simpson. Alex Welch led the Knights offensively, going 2-for-3 with two RBIs.
The Knights won a rain-delayed game against the West Michigan Phillies, 11-8. This was the only game in which the Knights fell behind an opponent, trailing 3-1 after three and a half innings. The Knights came alive in the bottom of the fourth inning, scoring three runs in the fourth, four runs in the fifth and three more in the sixth to bury the Phillies. The Knights' offense was led by catcher Dan Holland, who went 4-for-4, and starting pitcher Fedore, who went 3-for-3. Relief pitcher Jake Harris got the win
In the third game the Knights defeated the Michigan Wild 8-0. Jeff Jurgonski went 2-for-2 at the plate and Simpson hit his fourth home run of the season. Harris chalked up his second tournament win on the mound.
In their fourth game of the tournament, the Knights beat the Kalamazoo Cyclones 9-1. Jurgonski earned the pitching win for the Knights, allowing only two hits. Holland led the Knights at the plate, going 2-for-3 with two RBIs. Center fielder Kyle Prak hit his first home run of the season.
The Knights advanced to the championship game on Sunday with a perfect record and allowed only four runs in the tournament. The Knights beat the Wild 6-2 to claim the championship. Once again, the Knights got another strong showing from winning pitcher Harris. Harris pitched three shutout innings with four strikeouts. Simpson came in for the save in the seventh inning. The Knights' offense was led by Simpson who went 2-for-2, both doubles, and relief pitcher Fedore who went 2-for-4, also hitting two doubles.
The Knights returned to Comstock League play Monday night and improved to 10-2 overall and 2-0 in the league with a 9-2 victory over the Kalamazoo Cyclones in a rain-shortened game at Champ's Field in Niles.
David Ralston earned the pitching victory. Harris and Simpson each doubled for the Knights, who return to action Tuesday, May 18, at home against the Van Kal Rip Tide at 6:30 p.m.