CABA World Series: En Fuego unbeaten, Outlaws now 2-3

Abe Winter
Star Staff Writer

To no one’s surprise, Seattle En Fuego and the Montana 406 Elite are the top two seeds following preliminary play in the CABA 14U World Series being played at two fields in Miles City.

In the six-team round-robin format that started Thursday, En Fuego went 5-0 and 406 Elite, which has five players from both Butte Great Falls and one each from Anaconda, Missoula and Belgrade, was 4-1.

Run differential (runs scored minus runs allowed) was needed to determine the next three seeds after the Miles City Outlaws, Billings Crushers and Casper (Wyoming) Young Guns all went 2-3 overall and were 1-1 in head-to-head play.

Earning the third seed into today’s single-elimination play was the Crushers with a minus-6 differential, followed by the Outlaws at minus-11 and Young Guns at Minus-25. The Glendive Sons of Pitches were the No. 6 seed.

Today’s games started at 10:30 with the Outlaws facing the Young Guns, with the winner meeting En Fuego at 1 p.m. Those games were scheduled at Connors Stadium.

At 11:30 this morning, it was the Crushers meeting Glendive, with the winner taking on 406 Elite at 2 p.m. Those games were slated for Tedesco Field.

The last game of the tournament for the title is at 5 p.m. at Connors.

Here’s a look at each team’s performances in the round-robin format:

The Outlaws 14U (2-3): The host team supplied the heroics of opening day with a rally from six down to defeat Glendive 10-7 before falling 8-0 to En Fuego that night. Then came an 11-6 victory over the Young Guns Friday before getting mowed down 11-1 by 406 Elite in only four innings on Saturday. The Outlaws were beaten 5-4 Sunday by the Crushers, who won with only one hit.

The Miles City team was hurt by wildness against 406 Elite, allowing only two hits but issuing eight walks and hitting three batters. In the six-run sixth, 406 Elite didn’t have a hit but five walks and two hit batters resulted in the early end of the game by the 10-run rule.

The Outlaws on Friday had scored five runs in both the first and third innings to get past the Young Guns. Tel Aune and Shane Rickett did the pitching allowing only three hits. Rickett had two of the seven Miles City hits; Logan Gilmore doubled and Jacob Hurr had two RBIs.

Against the Crushers, Miles City had a 4-0 lead behind the pitching of hard-throwing Dylan Mieskens, but gave up one run in the fourth and four in the fifth and never recovered.

Relievers Rickett and Gilmore surrendered the five runs to the rallying Crushers. The four-run rally was aided by Victor Scott’s double — the only hit they managed — that was sandwiched among five walks, a balk that scored the tying run and a wild pitch that delivered the winning run.

En Fuego (5-0): An 8-0 win over Miles City was followed by four more triumphs — 2-1 over 406 Elite in what was the best-played game of the tourney so far; 12-0 over the Young Guns; 6-4 over the Crushers, and 18-0 over Glendive.

“This is where the tournament begins,” Seattle coach Erik Forgione said. “This is, ultimately, why we’re here.

“Our guys have really grown up this year. They’re excited and deserve to be where they’re at.”

406 Elite (4-1): After scoring 12 runs in the first inning en route to its 18-2 win over the Young Guns, 406 Elite fell 2-1 to Seattle, then beat the Young Guns 10-5, the Outlaws 11-1 in four innings and Glendive 13-3.

“We never had a practice,” said 406 Elite coach Clint Irish of Great Falls. “We don’t do a lot of coaching. They just go out and have fun — do it on their own.”

They had to use five pitchers in getting past the Young Guns, who managed only four hits but were helped by 10 walks. However, Ryan Burt struck out the side in the sixth inning to end it. Bridger Johnson went 4-for-4 with four RBIs, Ryan Richards was 3-for-4 and Kale Richards 2-for-2.

The team, which is comprised of American Legion players, went to tournaments at season’s end in Las Vegas and Billings, plus a camp in Mesquite, Nevada, in 2016. This is its first time together this season and represents some of the top 14-year-olds in Montana.

“They’re just high-level players with great attitudes,” Irish said.

The Crushers (2-3): The Billings team didn’t arrive until Friday and was a 7-6 winner over Glendive in its first game, then fell 10-5 to 406 Elite and 6-4 to En Fuego. On Sunday, the Crushers surprisingly lost 7-6 to the Young Guns before rallying to beat the Outlaws 5-4 in a game that almost carried to 11 p.m. after being delayed about 45 minutes because of the Home Run Derby.

Catcher Reigan Picicci threw out four baserunners against the Outlaws — three on attempted steals of second — and two other Miles City runners were erased on a pickoff and a ground ball to third

Young Guns (2-3): After getting the toughest draw and falling 18-2 to 406 Elite, 12-0 to En Fuego and 11-6 to the host Outlaws, the Young Guns surprisingly came back to notch two wins — 10-4 over Glendive and 7-6 over the Crushers. In the latter game Sunday, the Young Guns led 7-2 before the Crushers closed to 7-6 and had the bases loaded with one out in the sixth without scoring.

Glendive (0-5): After its disappointing 10-7 loss to the Outlaws, the Sons of Pitches lost 7-6 to the Crushers before going down to defeat 10-4 against the suddenly upstart Young Guns. In Sunday’s two games, Glendive was overwhelmed 18-0 by En Fuego and 13-3 by 406 Elite.

Sunday’s Home Run Derby was won by Jesse Brown of En Fuego, followed by teammate Charlie Olson and Bridger Johnson of 406 Elite. Olson was the leader in the semifinals with eight, followed by Johnson and Brown with six each. In the final round, Brown had six, Olson five and Johnson two.

To close the week’s schedule Seattle En Fuego has scheduled three games against the Outlaws Varsity (18U) on Tuesday at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. at Connors Stadium and at 11 a.m. Wednesday at Tedesco Field.

All proceeds will go to a fund to aid the firefighters in Montana.

Thursday Results

Tedesco Field — Miles City 14U 10, Glendive Sons of Pitches 7. Montana 406 Elite 18, vs. Casper Young Guns 2. Seattle En Fuego 8, Outlaws 14U 0.

Friday Results

Connors Stadium — En Fuego 2, 406 Elite 1. En Fuego 12, Young Guns 0. Billings Crushers 7, Glendive 6. Outlaws 11, Young Guns 6.

Saturday Results

Connors Stadium — 406 Elite 10, Young Guns 5. En Fuego 6, Crushers 4. Young Guns 10, Glendive 4. 406 Elite 11, Outlaws 1. 

Sunday Results

Connors Stadium — Young Guns 7, Crushers 6. En Fuego 18, Glendive 0. 406 Elite 13, Glendive 3. Crushers 5, Outlaws 4.

(Contact Abe Winter at or 406-234-0450.)