The title game of the 57th-annual tournament proved tense. When Bowser retired Salsbery in order in the sixth, it marked just the second 1-2-3 inning in the game. Both squads put the pressure on the other throughout.
“It was back and forth, back and forth,” Salsbery manager Dan Wright said. “I have to give it to both teams for getting here and playing good games.”
Salsbery struck first. In the top of the first, leadoff hitter Casey Vail reached on an error and Kitchel Gifford drew a one-out walk. Elliot Arnold followed with a single to center, but King’s cut down Vail trying to score for the second out to seemingly halt Salsbery’s momentum. Instead, Daniel Wright drew a walk and Adam Terrell hit a grounder that King’s misplayed, allowing Gifford to score.
Salsbery returned the favor in the bottom of the first. Matthew Arcari drew a one-out walk and Jaden Armfield followed with a groundout. Arcari took third on the play, then scooted home when Salsbery committed a throwing error.
King’s added a run in the second for a 2-1 lead. Charez Butcher led off with a single and advanced to second on an error. Cameron Arcari followed with a sacrifice to move Butcher to third. Two batters later, Caydan Belt drew a walk, putting runners on the corners with two outs. With Ethan Moon at the plate, Belt broke for second, drawing a throw. Belt stopped, drawing Salsbery into a pickle play, and Butcher came home on the delayed steal for the 2-1 lead.
The score remained 2-1 until the fifth.
In the top of the fifth, Vail reached on a single, moved to second on Alex Kirk’s sacrifice, took third on a wild pitch and scored on a throwing error. Gifford then singled to left, moved to third on the play when King’s had a throwing error, and scored on a wild pitch for a 3-2 lead.