STOCKTON — It is now do or die time.
The Northgate A’s emerged from the consolation bracket to hand the Spreckels Park Braves their first loss of the District 67 Juniors Tournament of Champions on Thursday with a walk-off run in the bottom of the seventh for a 5-4 thrilling win at Paul Weston Park.
The two teams will face each other again tonight at 6 with the winner claiming the banner.
In the bottom of the seventh with the score 4-4, Chris Chavez (triple, two RBI, two runs) reached for Northgate on an error, the fifth error on the night for Spreckels Park. Chavez stole second and third and then came home on a groundout by Noah Navarro (two RBI) to end the game.
The game was a pitchers’ duel for 3.5 innings with Chris Stackpole of the Braves and Navarro combining to allow three hits and five 1-2-3 innings.
Then came the bottom of the fourth inning when three Spreckels Park errors helped gift the A’s four runs. Chavez (triple, two RBI, two runs) had the big hit of the inning with a two-RBI triple that scored Elias Salyer (double, run) and Tiago Chedinha.
Northgate returned the favor in the sixth and seventh innings when a pair of A’s errors helped the Braves knot the score at 4-4.
A Ryan Reyes groundout scored Ryan McIntyre in the sixth inning to draw Spreckels Park within 4-1. Isaac Green, Jacob Morrow and Chris Stackpole tallied an RBI apiece in the top of the seventh for the Braves to force the game into the bottom of the seventh.
Josh Graves was 2 for 3 with a run for Spreckels Park.