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LAPORTE UPENDS CHIEFS TWICE FOR STATE TITLE

Wednesday, July 11, 2012 • POSTED BY:  Paul Honeycutt Times Correspondent

HAMMOND | No one would be surprised if Jake Craft and Tommy Snyder's arms fell off at this point.

Craft threw a complete game, 105-pitch gem in which he allowed just six hits and one run in the Lakers' 2-1 win against the host Hammond Chiefs on Tuesday night to force a second championship game in the double-elimination Babe Ruth State Tournament.

Craft also threw a 71-pitch shutout one day earlier against the Schererville Indians 3-0 to reach the title game.

Craft got some support early after catcher Ian Price reached on an error and eventually scored a groundout from the aforementioned LaPorte starting pitcher.

What's even more astounding is that LaPorte was riding a 23 1/3 scoreless inning streak into the first championship game.

Hammond broke up the streak in the sixth after Noll's Kody Alayon scored on a double from Lowell's Danny DeBoer.

"It feels good to win. We'd like them to go 82-2, though," said Craft, who struck out three. "Obviously I was not throwing as hard, so I had to jam guys inside and hit my spots."

Craft's wish came true in the second game after Snyder tossed another gem, as he threw a complete game allowing just one run and four hits in the 3-1 championship-clinching victory.

LaPorte (18-1) got it started early again in the first, getting three straight hits, including an RBI single from Craft.

That's all Snyder would need, as the Chiefs' only threat came in the second inning after getting three consecutive singles themselves, including an RBI drive from Noll's Larry Crisler.

In Sunday's 2-0 win against Kokomo, Snyder was awesome yet again, throwing a complete game shutout, allowing just four hits while striking out six.

After the two losses, the Chiefs (25-11) are now 82-2 all-time in the Babe Ruth State Tournament.