Travel Notebook: Local Trio Help Canes Win Perfect Game WWBA 15U National Title

July 24 - Three area rising sophomores helped the EvoShield Canes National sweep 12 games en route to the Perfect Game WWBA 15U National Championship last week in Florida. 

A.J. Shepard (Osbourn Park), a catcher committed to Indiana University, along with left-hander Bradley Gagen (Paul VI Catholic), a Virginia recruit, and right-hander and infielder James Triantos (St. John’s), a McLean resident committed to North Carolina, played key roles as the Canes won each of their seven pool play games and were one of the 39 pool winners at then 312-team tournament. 

The Canes then allowed just four runs over five elimination games played over a two-day period on Thursday and Friday. Many of the team’s players also helped the Canes win the Perfect Game WWBA 14U National Championship last summer. 

Shepard swung one of the tournament’s hottest bats, hitting .500 (13-for-26) with a .629 on-base percentage, three doubles, three home runs and 13 RBI. He was 6-for-10 with four walks in bracket play. Gagen tossed two scoreless innings in an 11-1 semifinal win over North Carolina’s Dirtbags 15U Tap Out and finished with seven strikeouts in five scoreless innings over his two appearances.

Triantos, meanwhile, hit .387 (12-for-31) with a homer and seven RBI while making two short relief outings. He recorded the final five outs in a 12-2 win over Georgia’s Star National 15U Dobbs in the final. 

Stars 10U Colangelo Advances to Semifinals at USSSA World Series in Florida

Marucci Stars Colangelo won its first seven games before falling, 8-1, to California’s MVP Hustle Garcia on Saturday at the USSSA Wilson DeMarini Elite 10U World Series in Sanford, FL. 

The Stars outscored their opponents, 48-18, to advance to the semifinal round on Saturday morning, earning wins against teams from Florida, Michigan, Tennessee and Alabama. They’d beat Florida’s FCA Blueclaws, 10-2, in the semifinals before having their run end against the eventual tournament champions. 

The Prince William County-based team has a 30-4 record while winning six tournaments over the spring and summer seasons.

Diamond Elite, D.C. Cadets to Meet in NVTBL’s PSL Championship Game Tonight

Diamond Elite and the D.C. Cadets each posted lopsided shutouts last night in the Northern Virginia Travel Baseball League’s Premier Showcase League semifinals.

The two teams will meet tonight at 7 p.m. in the league’s summer championship game at South Lakes. 

In Diamond Elite’s 12-0 drubbing of the Metro Senators, Ryan Brokaw (Riverside) went 3-for-4 with three doubles and four RBI while Joe Vogatsky (Kettle Run) and Matt Weber (Potomac Falls) added three hits apiece and combined to drive in five runs. Thomas Haller (Woodgrove) went 5.2 innings, striking out seven to earn the decision. 

The Cadets then dispatched of NOVA Premier, 9-0, in the second semifinal as David Michael Jefferson (St. John’s) and Thomas Kresina (St. John’s) combined to drive in five runs and Xan Wojie (St. John’s) went 2-for-2 with an RBI and tossed three-plus scoreless innings. Justin Riemer (St. John’s) tossed the final four innings in relief. 

Sponsor: The magazine’s Travel Notebook is sponsored by the Northern Virginia Travel Baseball League. For more information on the NVTBL, visit its website at

Photo of Bradley Gagen courtesy of EvoShield Canes