Play ball at the Nelson!
Three Wood River Baseball and Softball Association youth baseball teams are among 23 Idaho squads in two divisions gathering in Hailey for the 48th annual Ray Nelson Invitational tournament Friday and Saturday, June 7-8.
Games are headquartered on the three diamonds at Nelson Field near Hailey Elementary School. Other games will be played at O’Donnell Park in Bellevue and at the high school softball field.
Out-of-town teams are coming from Twin Falls, Jerome, Burley, Rupert and Nampa.
Divisions are 12U with 12 teams, and 10U with 11 teams. The Wood River Outlaws and Wood River Rough Riders are in the 12U class and the Wood River Mustangs in 10U.
Pool play competition occurs Friday with games slated from 8 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Teams are then bracketed for the single elimination tournament Satur-day, June 8.
Last June, the Meridian All-Stars won the 12U tournament 11-3 over Bilt of Twin Falls. The Nampa 9U All-Stars earned the 10U championship 9-3 over Northside 10U All-Stars from the Jerome area.
The Nelson tourney started in 1972 as a continuation of the Wood River Valley Little League Invitational first staged Aug. 23-25, 1957 in Hailey and Ketchum.
It is named for Hailey base-ball booster Ray Nelson, who passed away in 1970.
Here is the team summary, along with local rosters and Friday preliminary games. All Wood River games are played on Nelson Field No. 1 for 12Us, and Nelson No. 2 and No. 3 for the 10U Mustangs:
12U Division(12 teams)
Wood River Outlaws, coaches Donnie Green and Josh Perron: Trace Alley, Sulli-van Carter, Wyatt Crego, Stokely Gardner, Alex Golub, Luke Hebert, Liam Jensen, Drake Orr, Kameron Perron, Ozzie Scherer, Easton Turck, Rhone Green and Jacob Uhrig.
Friday games are Outlaws vs. Nampa 11U All-Stars at 10 a.m., Outlaws vs. North-side SS at 2 p.m. and Outlaws vs. Canyon County 12U at 6 p.m.
Wood River Rough Riders, head coach Mike McKenna with assistant coaches Bob Leahy, Jeff London and Greg Swink: Eli Edwards, Rutger Funk, Winston Gallegos, Slade Landrum-Duval, Alex Leahy, Seth London, Jack McKenna, Simon Morgan, Alex Romero, Bill Smith, Will Swink and Carter Thompson.
Friday games are Rough Riders vs. Northside SS at 8 a.m., Rough Riders vs. Nampa 11U All-Stars at 12 noon, and Rough Riders vs. Nampa Rebels 4 p.m.
Other U12 teams include Vipers Venom, Nampa Rebels, Burley Green Sox, Minico Smashers 11U, Nampa Rampage and North-side State.
10U Division (11 teams)
Wood River Mustangs, coach Brad Golub: Daniel Cuellar, Sully Ferries, Will Hausmann, Patrick Hebert, Will Lamoureux, Rocket Lukkasson, Sam McKenna, Tyler Nilsen, James Smith, Wyatt Stone, Dexter Thompson and Jackson Golub.
Friday games are Mustangs vs. Burley Green Sox at 8 a.m. and Mustangs vs. Northside All-Stars at 4 p.m.
Other 10U teams are Canyon County Punishers, Vipers 10U and 9U, Nampa Aces 9U, Nampa Clutch 10U, Twin Falls Pioneers, Minico Smashers 10U and Rip City 10U.