The championship of the Rocky Mountain Classic Baseball Tournament June 19 to 23 in Grand Junction, Colo., was garnered by a Flagstaff team that features a trio of former Longhorns on its roster.
The Peaks 16- to 18-year-old traveling-star baseball team compiled a 5-1 record during the diamond challenge that drew 10 teams from Colorado, California and Arizona.
The Payson players participating on the Peaks team are Waylon Pettet, Nate Perna and Jeremy Heairet. All graduated from PHS last spring and are looking to continue their careers on the college level.
Players from Kingman, Prescott, Chino Valley, Page, Winslow and Flagstaff also are on the team. The squad is coached by Ed Vesley of Flagstaff Coconino.
In the tournament, Pettet got the starting nod in centerfield and played all six games. Perna started at shortstop and Heairet was the winning pitcher in a Peaks' victory over a Denver team.
According to PHS assistant baseball coach Ted Pettet, who accompanied the team to Grand Junction, the three Payson players turned in solid performances.
The stadium where the tournament was held is the same one the National Junior College Athletic Association World Series is held each summer.
"It was really a nice stadium, a treat for the kids to play in it," Pettet said.
The tournament also afforded the players the opportunity to showcase their skills in front of college recruiters.
"There were scouts there, I know of ones from Mesa State and Yavapai," Pettet said.
Next up for the Peaks team is an Independence Day youth tournament July 4 in Flagstaff. In the fray, players will be restricted to wood bats rather than the high-tech metal bats they are allowed to use in high school and most tournaments.