Two locals shine in national travel baseball tournament

Two Laguna Beach athletes Cutter Clawson and Kolton Freeman played key roles for the Baseball Performance Academy Team Rawlings Elite Under-11 team in national tournament play.

Clawson, a left-handed pitcher and first baseman, and Freeman, a third baseman and outfielder, were in Marietta, Ga., last week for the Travel Ball Select 11U National Championship. The tournament drew the top 24 teams nationally. Team Rawlings, ranked third nationally, finished 5-2 at the tournament, which ended July 11.

Team Rawlings scored pool-play victories over the 20th-ranked Dallas Tigers of Texas (7-5), 21st-ranked Team Combat of Florida (11-1), the 13th-ranked East Cobb Astros of Georgia (9-8) and the 24th-ranked Atlanta Blue Jays of Georgia (12-8).

Team Rawlings was one of four undefeated teams after pool play and moved on to Bracket play (top 12 teams). Following a first-round bye, Team Rawlings defeated sixth-ranked Banditos Black of Texas, 3-2. It then dropped its first game, 6-1, to fourth-ranked Nomads Elite of California and was tied in the sixth inning against top-ranked and eventual tournament champion Lids Indiana Bulls (Indiana), before losing, 6-2.

Freeman played both left and right field and batted in the No. 7 spot. He had five hits in 11 at-bats, with a triple and stole three bases.

Clawson played first base, pitched and batted in the No. 2 slot. He went five for 12 with a pair of triples, walked twice, drove in four runs, scored five times and stole two bases.

Team Rawlings previously won its division June 10 at the United States Specialty Sports Assn.'s California State Championships in West Covina. The team went 5-0 and outscored its opponents, 39-3. Later that month, Team Rawlings won its division at the Triple Crown SlumpBuster Tournament at Omaha, Neb. Team Rawlings defeated teams from Illinois, Nebraska, Texas and New Jersey, outscoring the opposition, 42-5.

Clawson and Freeman both previously played baseball in Laguna Beach Little League and both graduated June 22 from Top of the World School.


Girls' Volleyball

The Girls' 16-and-Under Beach Volleyball tournament, sponsored by Quiksilver and the city of Laguna Beach, came to an end July 12 at Main Beach in Laguna Beach. The title was won by Camille Davey (San Clemente) and Marisa Ramsey (Laguna Niguel), who defeated Presley Forbes and Lauren Cordero, both of Manhattan Beach, in the final.

Sabrina Stillwell of Laguna Beach and partner Hayley Powell of San Clemente finished tied for third with Kate Pexman and Stephanie Burnside, both of Goleta.

Briana Boyd and Aspen Rocha, both of Laguna Beach, also competed in the tournament.

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