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Blaze 9s capture Regional crown
The Ceres Blaze nine-and-under travel baseball team bested all challengers while finishing first at the Bel Passi Pony Regional Tournament. - photo by Contributed to the Courier

The Ceres Blaze Red nine-and-under travel baseball team captured its fourth first-place trophy this past week.
The Blaze moved to 23-11 on the year after winning all three of their games at the Bel Passi Pony Regional Tournament.
“It’s hard to find any flaws in this team,” head coach Gabriel Cordova said. “We’ve been clicking. We play exciting baseball. We’re fundamentally sound and mentally tough.”
Ceres topped Bel Passi 12-2 for the title on July 2.
The Blaze took control in the third and fourth innings. Ceres totaled six runs.
Ceres defeated Bel Passi 23-9 on June 30.
The Blaze collected 16 hits.
Ceres shut out Modesto Heat 14-0 on June 29.
Pitcher Andres Lujan tallied five strikeouts.
The Blaze totaled 10 hits and nine stolen bases.
 “The boys dominated,” Cordova said.
Cordova established his team in December.
Ceres won titles at the Bel Passi Invitational All-Star Tournament, Pedretti Park Memorial Weekend Classic and Rainbow Fields TPR Spring Classic.
The Blaze posted a combined record of 12-0.
“We had high expectations from the beginning,” Cordova said. “We developed that right formula. We have a great defense. We hit the ball. We play fundamental baseball.”
Ceres will compete at the West Zone-NorCal Super Region Tournament this week in Brentwood. The Blaze will play their first game on Wednesday. The tourney will run through Sunday. The top team advances to the Zone championships, to be held July 20-23, in Walnut, Calif.
 “It’s very exciting,” Cordova said. “The other teams are going to be just as hungry.”