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Sunnyside's Brown Sox win berth to World Series

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The KFC/A&W Brown Sox of Sunnyside have qualified for the Super 'E' World Series in Las Vegas. The team is currently seeking out financing to make the trip in October.

KENNEWICK - One can only marvel at the season the Sunnyside KFC/A&W Brown Sox have had thus far.

Not only did the Brown Sox win the Lower Valley Men's Slo-pitch Softball League title, the Sunnyside team went undefeated at this year's State tournament for class 'E' teams.

But, the accolades don't stop there. The Brown Sox competed at the Northwest 'E' Western World Championships this past weekend in Kennewick, and ended up securing a fourth place showing. In the process, the KFC/A&W crew earned a berth to the Super 'E' World Series Championships, slated for Oct. 8-10 in Las Vegas, Nev.

"Our team has one week to accept the berth or not," said Brown Sox Manager Bob Sarmiento Sr. "Everything will depend on if we can raise enough money to make the trip.

"We are hoping our sponsors or other merchants, if possible, might assist us in representing Sunnyside at the World Series Championships," Sarmiento added.

Whether the fund-raising venture is successful or not, the Brown Sox have had one whale of a season.

In winning the Lower Valley league title, the Sunnysiders posted a sparkling 27-3 record. The team's unity might be directly responsible for its success, as there are two father and son combinations on the squad, as well as four sets of brothers.

At the 'E' State tournament in Kent, held in August, the Brown Sox were well on their way to the trophy round, winning their first two games of the tourney. They were one of eight clubs that were undefeated heading into Sunday's play. Unfortunately, the tournament was called on Sunday due to inclement weather.

"I thought we had a very good chance to win State this year," Sarmiento said. "Now, we'll never know."

What the Brown Sox do know, however, is that they were one of the elite squads at the even more prestigious Northwest 'E' Western World Championships held in Kennewick this past weekend. The Sunnyside team won five games there, compared to just two losses, in placing fourth.

The Brown Sox opened the Kennewick tourney with a dominating 14-4 victory over the Dalles Dawgs of Vancouver. They followed up the win with another, a 4-1 decision over Sinko Concrete of Tacoma. The Brown Sox sustained its first loss late Saturday afternoon, a 4-0 defeat to the eventual tournament champions, Crazy Moose of Kennewick.

"On Sunday our bats woke up and we beat Jackson's of the Tri-Cities by a score of 11-4," said Sarmiento.

The Brown Sox went on to 16-3 and and 7-5 victories over Swinging Johnson's of Kent and Rolling Rock of Lynnwood, respectively.

In the trophy round, with the loser taking home the fourth place trophy and the winner advancing to the semi-finals, the Brown Sox were edged, 10-9, by Molen Orthdontics of Auburn.

"We were down 9-3, but scored six runs in the seventh inning (to tie it)," said Sarmiento. "But we lost when the Auburn team scored a run in the bottom of the seventh, which put us out of the tournament."

All-in-all, Sarmiento and his bunch weren't unhappy with how they fared this past weekend.

"We made a great showing," he said.

This year's team members included Sarmiento and his son Bobby Jr., Rene Montelongo, brothers Lino and Joe Gutierrez, Chris McCallum, Andy and Alex Carrizales, Dave Torres, Bobby and Josue Garza, Scott Perkins, Kevin and Ryan McClure, and Fidel Castro.

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