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Blaze 10s claim state championship
Ceres storm back for 14-13 win in USSSA title game
The Ceres Blaze 10-and-under travel softball team placed first at the USSSA NCTB State Championship Tournament this past week in Manteca. Ceres won all five of its games. - photo by Contributed to the Courier

The Ceres Blaze 10-and-under travel baseball team won the USSSA NCTB State Championship Tournament in thrilling fashion this past weekend at Big League Dreams Park in Manteca.

The Blaze rallied for a 14-13 six-inning win over The Bank of Riverbank in the championship game on Sunday.

Ceres battled back from an eight-run deficit during the contest, which lasted two-plus hours.

"We've been in that position before," Blaze head coach Jorge Guerrero said. "The kids keep fighting. They have a lot of heart."

Ceres trailed 13-8 going into the final inning.

Damian Terra accounted for the game-winning hit.

Terra's bases-loaded, two-out single into the right-center gap scored Cristian Jacinto from third base.

"We've played that team before and never lost to them," Guerrero said. "It was just one of those days. The kids never stopped believing. That was cool to see."

The Blaze compiled a 5-0 record at the NCTB State Championships.

Ceres collected wins against The Bank, Solano Nationals (13-5), Nor-Cal Tracy-Cardinals (9-1), CVI Legends (9-1) and 925 Baseball Outlaws (10-3).

"We went undefeated," Guerrero said.

Ceres improved to 37-11-2 on the season.

The Blaze placed first for the fourth time.

"All of the kids love the game," Guerrero said. "Nobody is forcing them to play."