Prep Baseball Report

Grant Ross, Drew Stippich lead STiKS Black to 16U Title at The Rock

Christian Barczi
Wisconsin Staff

FRANKLIN, Wis. – Grant Ross led the way, Drew Stippich walked it off, and STiKS Academy Black took down the Top Tier Americans, 6-5, in eight innings to take home the 16U title at the Rock Sports Complex in Franklin, Wis., on Sunday. 

The Americans opened the scoring in the top of the third behind RBI base-hits from Ryan Orput and Christopher Schellhorn. It didn’t take long for the STiKS to answer back; Notre Dame commit Joey Spence delivered in a big way with a two-out single up the middle that would plate two runs, including Michigan commit Q Phillips who scored all the way from first base, to tie the game at three in the bottom half of the third.

Ross opened the bottom of the fourth with his first of two doubles on the afternoon. Kale Dietz drove him in with his own RBI single -- giving STiKS a one-run advantage heading to the fifth.

In what became a common theme in a highly contested championship game, Top Tier answered right back with two runs of their own in the top of the fifth behind another RBI single from Schellhorn and an opposite-field double from South Carolina commit Vytas Valincius

The Americans had the momentum squarely in their favor after taking the lead into the bottom of the sixth. Enter Ross – again – who wasn’t going to let his squad go down without his final say. He took a one-strike, two-out pitch over the left-center field wall to tie the game up at five. 

The bats went silent with minimal threats over the next few half innings, but finally in the bottom of the eighth, the STiKS loaded the bases with nobody out and eventually Stippich delivered with a sacrifice fly down the right field line – putting the finishing touches on a special tournament at The Rock.

With the championship victory, STiKS Academy Black capped a perfect 6-0 weekend. After a huge performance in the championship game,  Ross took home the tournament offensive MVP.

Top Performers 


  • Grant Ross (STiKS): 3-for-4, 2 2B, HR

  • Drew Stippich (STiKS): 2-for-4, walk-off sac fly

  • Joey Spence (STiKS): 1-for-3, 2 RBI, BB

  • Ryan Orput (Top Tier): 3-for-4, RBI

  • Nathan Schellhorn (Top Tier): 2-for-4, 2 RBI