By Ron Rop
West Michigan Riptide East 15U and West Michigan Riptide 13U Blue both finished as runners-ups in recent travel baseball tournaments.
Riptide East, coached by Chris Beck, Gary Michele and Brandon Beck, headed into its first tournament of the season at the Great Lakes Elite 15U tournament at Grand Valley State University and Hope College.
Riptide East won five straight games and qualified for the title game on Sunday. The team batting average was .341. Leading the offense was DJ Bowen with a .467 batting average. He also knocked in four runs. Kaleb Cook batting .462 and Chris Dirselberg also had a solid offensive showing.
Pitcher Jay Mitchell posted two victories on the mound for Riptide East.
In the title game, Riptide dropped a 4-3 decision to the Oakland A’s, a team out of Detroit.
In the 13U tournament, at Kalamazoo Challenge, the 13U Blue squad reached the semifinals with a 3-0 record and a No. 1 seed.
In the championship game, Riptide dropped a 10-8 decision.
In five games, it outscored its opponents 39-15.
Leading hitters were Matt Sander (.643), Tyler Trovinger (.600) and Brady Luttrull (.375).