Posted by Don Web on Aug 13 2009 at 05:00PM PDT

The Danville HOOTS arrived in Farmington, New Mexico for the Connie Mack World Series. Highlights are posted each day.

Thursday August 6:  A 6:00AM flight from Oakland and a 3 hour bus ride from Albuquerque to Farmington, New Mexico we finally arrived.  The bus was met a few miles outside of the city and provided a police escort into Farmington.  The players had the opportunity first to see Ricketts Stadium the site of all games.  A Beautiful field that seats 6,000 and every game is sold out through the tournament.

Players and coach's attended orientation, treated to a dance routine, lots of pictures from locals, and were provided a hamburger fry dinner.  The players met their host families who they will be staying with for the entire tournament.  The coaching staff was provided a Silverado for their use during the tournament. 

The HOOTS name continues to intrigue everyone here and received the honor of being recognized as the best amateur baseball name by the tournament directors.  Coach Johns has thanked everyone here during orientation as having the experience from other national tournaments for their organization and hospitality.

Friday August 7:

Farmington 'throws out the red carpet' was the quote of the day as the streets were lined deep with thousands of people for the annual parade to honor the 10 Connie Mack teams that are in the World Series.  Each team had a float provided for them and Western Refinery from Bloomfield was the host for the HOOTS.  Greatly decorated in the club colors of black, silver and white with the club slogan, "Champions Are Made When No One is Watching".  Large banners on the side with California HOOTS was a croud favorite.  The HOOTS had the honor to have the cheerleading squad from the local high school cheer for them on the float as they went down the long main street in Farmington.

The team finally found time for a short batting session and some field work prior to the official first games.  All 10 teams were on the field for the Opening Ceremony and were introduced to the capacity crowd.  Another well done event for everyone with honor guards.  Again, the announcers claimed "Now, I love this team and they have best name in baseball, the Danville HOOTS."  You remember these moments of this experience and every coach and player knows the honor of being here.

Saturday, August 8:

The HOOTS lost to the Midland Redskins 3-1 in their opening game at the Connie Mack World Series to a capacity crowd at Reckitt Stadium. The HOOTS loaded the bases in the first inning to score the only run of the game, and an outstanding catch off the wall in right field by Midland to end the inning, and a key single in the bottom of the sixth inning by Midland were the difference of winning and losing.  Left hand pitcher Michael Theofanopoulous of Danville pitched an outstanding game.  The HOOTS led early 1-0 and Midland tied the game up in the 3rd.  The game remained tied until the bottom of the sixth inning with two outs when Midland broke the tie with a key single to score the go ahead run.

Sunday August 9:

The HOOTS battled to the end in a 7-6 loss to the Dallas D Bat Mustangs in an elimination game at the Connie Mack World Series.  The HOOTS took an early 1-0 lead from a Chris Keck home run in the second inning.  The DBat's went ahead on a 3 run home run off starter Mark Appel in the fourth inning after a 3rd out strike out pass ball was not blocked and followed with another home run in the same inning.  The HOOTS came back to take a 6-4 lead in the fifth inning spurred by a squeez bunt play.  Dallas came back in the bottom of the sixth to take a lead 7-6.

The 2009 HOOTS season ended with a 42-9-1 record, a Connie Mack North Championship, and a Connie Mack West Region Championship and the honor to represent the West Region at the Connie Mack World Series that marks them as only the second team since 1959 to achieve that goal. 

In an interview with Coach Johns on local media stations his comments were "we will find a way to build our team with players to help us to get back to the Connie Mack World Series and Farmington." 

Richard Neely, President of AABC came to the field to compliment Coach Johns on the quality of the team, their play, and the way they represented the West Region during the World Series.  

The team will return to California on Monday with a summer of great memories. 

Earlier in the day the HOOTS host Janet Mackey from Western Refinery held a lunch for all the players and parents and foster parents to start the day.  In the afternoon the HOOTS and all teams attended the Connie Mack Home Run Derby.  Stephen Piscotty represented the HOOTS.

The game as expected was an exciting game between two very good nationally recognized programs both having a long history but faced each other for the first time.

Support is coming from many people and we thought we would share some of these with you.

From Nate Schierholtz, San Francisco Giants MLB:

"Donny-Congratulations on going to the Connie Mack World Series.  Thinking about you and the team.  The last trip to the American Legion World Series in 2001 was a lot of fun for me and the rest of the team.  Enjoy the ride and Good Luck."

From Dean Manderson,San Diego Gamers Baseball Club:

Congratulations on winning the Connie Mack Western Regional and advancing to the World Series. You guys are a class organization and we wish you the best in Farmington.  Good Luck!"

From Steve Trombly, Trombly Baseball SoCal:

"Congratulations on earning your way to the Connie Mack World Series.  The HOOTS are a great organization and whenever you aren't playing us I'm always rooting for you guys and wish you success.  Your team will be a great representative for the Western Region and I wish you luck.  Our team has been to Farmington twice and the experience is second to none.  Your players, coach's and parents will have memories from that week to last a life time.  Good luck Don and go get 'em."

From Mario Iglesias, Head First Gamers:

"Headfirst Bercovich hope the HOOTS continue a magical run in Farmington. I played there in 1991 for Bercovich and it is an experience I will never forget.This is great for Northern California Connie Mack and shows that in addition to the HOOTS being there all of us who are aspiring to make it there get to know what it takes to get there.  Best of luck."

From John Hughes, Northern California Professional Scouts Association:

"Don--on behalf of the NorCal Scouts Association I want to send out a big congrats and good luck to you and the rest of the HOOTS.  Thanks for making Northern California Baseball Proud. Nice going"

From Head Coach Dave Esquer, University of California Berkeley:

 "Congratulations, great job in getting your team to Farmington and the Connie Mack World Series.  That is awesome and a really great accomplishment, a big deal and good job and wanted you to know.

From Si Petro, Orange County Renegades:

"Congratulations to your club on a huge accomplishment.  It is really a great experience for your team and they are well deserving of this opportunity.  Best of luck and enjoy the experience of the Connie Mack World Series."

From Dave Manning, Delta Indians:

"Congratulations to you and your group.  You have a very special group and it was really exciting to watch you play and play against you.  It will really be a neat experience for you and your boys.  I wish you well and hope you can come back with a national championship ring." 

From Tony Crivello, NorCal Baseball:

"Congrats on winning the CM West.  Best of luck to you guys down in New Mexico.  We will be rooting for you."

From Dan Sozzi, EDH Vipers:

"Good luck in Farmington, I hope you guys win it all. That would be a great accomplishment with your American Legion Championship that you won.  Keep everyone posted and let your guys know the Vipers are rooting for you to win it all."

From Al Carrasco, Oakland Baseball Club:

"The Oakland Baseball Club is proud of the HOOTS for getting it done the right way. Congratulations to your players and coach's on your West Region Championship.  We wish you the best at the World Series and believe that you have what it takes to bring home the crown.  Go take it."

From your friends, Coach Joel and California Smoke:

"Congratulations to your team and coach's on your west regional championship.  Good luck at the World Series.

From Don Miller, Lafayette Generals:

"Don, congratulations! You have really put together a great program.  Good luck in Farmington...and enjoy the great facility and atmosphere!!


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