The 2016 WWBA World Championships consisted of 88 teams split into 22 pools. The 22 pool winners and ten second-place teams would continue on to the playoffs. The Chicago Scouts Association's Jupiter Fall Team played two teams that made it to the playoffs, one being the Dirtbags from Sedalia, NC the eventual crowned champions.
The Jupiter Fall Team's first game was against the eventual tournament champion, the Dirtbags. The team was led by Alex Binelas and Colby Gomes; who both collected two hits. Despite finishing their half of the 6th inning within two runs, the Jupiter Fall Team lost 11-7. Their next game was against the Astros Scout Team/Elite Squad Prime. In this game, the Jupiter Fall Team collected hits from Jarred Kelenic, Jack Blomgren, Sam Faith, and Taylor Jackson, but they were unable to produce any runs. The pitching combination of Paul Beverly, Ben Dragani, and Ryan Kutt did not allow an earned run in the 4-0 loss. On October 21st, the Jupiter Fall Team faced-off against MVP at the Roger Dean Complex. Angelo Smith threw 4 strong innings, striking out 7 and surrendering 2 hits. Jack Blomgren, Connor Gurnik, and Taylor Jackson each tallied a hit in the 2-1 loss. The Jupiter’s team luck turned on Saturday and Sunday. On 10/22, theywon 6-5 against the SGV Aresenal, Ryan Hoerter pitched 3.2 innings of one-hit baseball striking out 6. Joe Donovan and Donivan Williams each collected one of the 7 hits recorded. The bats exploded on Sunday in a 9-0 win over D-Bat. Over half of the teams at-bats were quality at-bats, with Jarred Kelenic and Donovan Williams driving in a pair of runs. Glenn Albanese Jr and Ryan Kutt combined to throw the 5-inning shutout.
The last game of the tournament would conclude with the annual Hoosier Gold Bat Game. The Jupiter Fall Team entered with an overall record of 1-3 in this contest. Their previous win was 1-0 in 2014. Five different pitches toed the rubber totaling 8 strikeouts with no pitcher allowing more than 1 walk. Seven separate hitters recorded a hit and Jordon Rogers had 3 RBIs. This overall team effort resulted in a 6-1 victory and the illustrious Gold Bat returning to the Chicagoland area.
The 2016 WWBA World Championship All-Tournament Team consisted of 10 Chicago Scouts Association members. The state of Illinois was represented by Paul Beverly, H L Richards’ Angelo Smith, Kenwood Academy’s Taylor Jackson, McHenry West’s Bobby Miller, Brother Rice’s Ryan Kutt, and Batavia’s Glenn Albanese Jr. Wisconsin was represented Indian Trail Academy’s Ryan Hoerter, Craig’s Jack Blomgren, and Catholic Memorial’s Ben Dragani. The lone Nebraska representative was Colby Gomes.
Overall, this was a very successful trip. The team made the most of its opportunities. More importantly, they were not discouraged by their early struggles and were able to gain some momentum going in to their game with Sandlot Sox. Coach John Sarna summed the trip up best, “At the end of the day, we went down there and competed against the best competition we could find and provided us the most exposure, that in itself is mission accomplished.”