NORTH MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) -We had a chance to chat with Mankato Peppers Blue 10U after their win over the Mankato Peppers Orange 10U to see how their tournament run is going.
“Well the kids have done a nice job, pool play we were one and one, beat a team from Bismarck North Dakota, lost to a very good team out of Wisconsin who I would say are probably the odds on to win it, they are still undefeated here in the tournament and then reeled off a couple more wins yesterday and two today so five and one for the tournament, the kids have been playing great, we’ve had good weather, last tournament of the year so they’re having fun, playing well,” Mike Barten, Mankato Peppers Blue head coach, said.
With their latest win being over the other Peppers 10U team the squad agreed it was a bit of an odd contest to be a part of.
“It was hard because I knew a lot of them, played with them, but it was exciting, a good experience,” Cami Schuh, Mankato Peppers Blue pitcher, said.
“Yeah I mean it seems like every tournament we’ve gone to and they’ve been in, we’ve run into them. It’s a rivalry but it’s a friendship at the same time, the kids have played on teams together before so they know each other. It’s probably more nerve wracking for the parents than it is for the kids but the kids did a nice job, came out hit the ball well and scored some runs,” Barten said.
A big part of the team’s success comes from their pitcher catcher duo leaning on each other and working well together.
“It’s very good because I know I can trust her, known her for a long time,” Schuh said.
“They’re good, they’ve gotten so much better since the beginning of the year, they do have some history together and do know, they’re comfortable with each other. Keira’s gotten so much better as far as blocking balls, keeping them in front of her so I think that gives Cami confidence when she’s pitching to throw any pitch she wants knowing that her catcher’s going to get in front of it and keep and knock it down,” Barten said.
“I feel like we’re doing pretty good, me and Cami are really close, we’ve known each other since t–ball and stuff so yeah I feel pretty confident,” Keira Schipper, Mankato Peppers Blue 10U catcher, said.
The squad will do their best to carry on this confidence into the last day of the tournament.
“We start at 8 a.m. again tomorrow so there’s four teams left, we’re hoping to get that first game, get a win, get in the top three, get some hardware and then we’ll see,” Barten said.
“That would be amazing I know we have a really good team, I feel we could do very good tomorrow,” Schuh said.
“I feel like if we worked our best and put all we can into the games we could get pretty far,” Schipper said.
Sunday the team will compete against Millard Fury with hopes to continue on in the tournament.