By Patrick Lujan
Guam and CNMI will be coming together once again through baseball, this time forming the Marianas Labor Day U18 Friendship Baseball Tournament to be held at Paseo Stadium September 3-5.
Two teams from Saipan and two teams from Guam will make up the tournament with some of the best young talent hailing from the two baseball rivalry islands.
The idea came about when Roke Alcantara, Jr. and Saipan’s Jerome Delos Santos, once opponents on the diamond, decided to unite and create a friendly tournament for our prime teenagers.
“It’s always been a dream of mine to get the top young CNMI players to come over and compete with our top young players,” Alcantara said. “It was easy to get Coach Jerome to buy into the concept and now we have a pretty good talent pool for the three-day tournament.”
Coach Delos Santos is super excited to bring his players to Guam, saying that the Saipan boys haven’t played in four years since they were in Little League.
“They are so happy and they’re are so grateful for me to do this and train them. Some of these kids lost their potential and lost the love of the game. But now that they’re on my team they love the game again. They are so excited to play again for the first time in four years.”
Delos Santos said his team is so excited that practices are fully attended and the energy is high.
“They come every practice prepared to learn more of the fundamentals of baseball. I am so honored to train and coach these kids. They’re all excited and so am I. We can’t wait to be down there.”
The tournament is in honor of former pitching standout Steve Alcantara, who passed away in a drowning accident in 2011. Delos Santos remembers facing Steve Alcantara back in the day.
“One of the best pitchers I’ve ever face during my all-star career,” added Delos Santos
Ricky Leon Guerrero
Jonathan Delos Santos
John Salas Jr
Team Scoutz Saipan 1
Team Scoutz Saipan 2
Joel Deleon Guerrero
Kazu Dela Cruz
GPS Sports Calendar