2024 54+ National

West Coast Gamecocks 13, Maine Diamond Dogs 8

Submitted by Eddie Maldonado, on behalf of manager Michael Noto

The 2024 Holiday Classic was a great tournament with great competition. All the teams played well, and new friends were made. In a championship game that saw the lead go back and forth, the West Coast Gamecocks emerged victorious with a final score of 13 to 8 over the Maine Diamond Dogs. It was a pitching and hitting team effort.

We used three pitchers in our championship game. All three pitchers had pitched and had tired arms and bodies, but they gave everything they had for the win (Mark Portmann, Jose Sanchez, and Chris Matson). Eddie Fuller was our leadoff hitter for every game, and he had a fantastic tourney. Dave Benedict aka “Super Dave” had his typical great shortstop tournament, and his baseball acumen was at full display.

Chris Matson won two games on the mound and was one of the top hitters on the team. Lucious Landing, a new player to the team, was our MVP, hitting and catching. Jose Sanchez was another 2-way player; hitting and pitching. Russ Ward, fresh out of a knee operation, played great and had two RBIs in the championship game. Dave Oliver was his usual Mr. Consistency. Mike Veronesi, recovering from eye problems, (you wouldn’t know it) had a great overall tournament.

Nicky Lanzarin, our right fielder, displayed his speed and hitting power. Noel Arrizagga pitched well and saved two games. Juan Jaime caught four games but had to leave late Sunday due to a family emergency. Eddie Maldonado, pinch hitter and Official team scorekeeper, and our Gamecock player/manager, Mike Noto, had multiple key hits in the tournament, pitched, and made great managerial decisions.

Thank you to all who put this tournament together!