Mike Thomas went 3-for-5 with five RBIs to lead Lodi's 15-and-under Babe Ruth baseball team to a 12-1 win over O'Keefe in the District 7 Tournament title game Sunday at Kofu Park.
Thomas, who was 7-for-12 with nine RBIs in Lodi's three wins, was named the tournament's most valuable player.
With the victory, Lodi advanced to the state tournament which begins next weekend in Clovis. Lodi's first game is at 10 a.m. Saturday.
It's the third straight year Lodi has advanced to the state tournament.
Lodi starting pitcher Derrick Cotten had a solid outing Sunday, allowing only one unearned run on one hit and striking out three in five innings of work.
Holding a 2-0 lead entering the bottom of the fourth, Lodi erupted for five runs to put the game out of reach.
Blair Hinojosa got the rally started with a one-out double and scored on a double by Nate Hall. Andrew Schultz, who had two hits in the game, then singled and stole second to put runners at second and third for Brad Marweg (3-for-4 with a double), who reached on an error that plated Hall.
Thomas followed with a two-run single and later scored on a double by Albert Monte to give Lodi a 7-0 lead.
Matt Recker added a double and Alex Forster singled for Lodi.
Other members of the Lodi team include players Joshua Borges, Brandon Connors, Tim Ergonis and Joey Lucchesi, head coach Hobie Schultz, and coaches Clay Hall and Carl Cotten.
Comments about this story? Send mail to the News-Sentinel newsroom.
To subscribe to the Lodi News-Sentinel, fill out our online form or call our Subscriber Services Department at (209) 333-1400.