Wilcox plays baseball in Cooperstown

July 15, 2001|By DORA DEPAOLI, Staff Writer

HOLTVILLE — A dream came true recently for Travis Wilcox, 10.

He and his teammates from the San Diego Stars North, a traveling tournament baseball team, flew to New York where they took first place in the annual 10-year-old tournament at Cooperstown Dream Park in Cooperstown, N.Y. Forty-eight teams from across the United States participated in the tournament.

Travis, a fifth-grader at Finley Elementary in Holtville, was accompanied on the trip by his parents, Mike and Traci Wilcox, and his sister, Taylor. His entourage also included his grandparents, Gene and Joyce Wilcox of Holtville and Lorenzo and Marsha Lizarraga of Alpine.

On the first day of the tournament, which was Father's Day, Travis gave his father a present by hitting two home runs.


Traci said the talented San Diego team moved the players around to "a lot of different positions."

Travis had a .562 batting average for the tournament. He also played numerous positions at Cooperstown, pitching, catching, playing third base and the outfield. His most exciting moment came while pitching in the championship game before a crowd of 1,000.

Mike Angulo, one of the coaches for the Holtville 9-and-10-year-old all-star team, said Travis has a "big heart and an outstanding talent for baseball. He motivates the rest of the team and thinks of others."

The 104-acre baseball park for kids is just four miles south of the National Baseball Hall of Fame. The complex includes 10 lighted fields housed in a "baseball village," with private clubhouses for teams. Inspiration for naming it Dreams Park was provided by the well-known Kevin Costner movie, "Field of Dreams." Players participating in the games receive a uniform and a Hall of Fame ring. Travis's ring resembles a school ring.

While in Cooperstown the 600 players stayed in dormitories. A favorite pastime was trading baseball pins with other players. Travis ended up with 43 pins. While there Travis played in 11 games. The games sometimes lasted late into the night. The championship game didn't start until 10 p.m. and ended at midnight.

Travis hopes to attend Stanford University and play baseball there. His favorite baseball team is the San Diego Padres. For his birthday next month he has asked to be taken to a Padres game.

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