Mountain Pointe twins, Scott, left, and Sam Kingery brings the exeprience of playingn in the infield at the Little League World Series to the Pride baseball team. Larry Ward/AFN

They look alike and the think alike.

So even though they're only sophomores, Scott and Sam Kingery give Mountain Pointe's baseball team a combination up the middle of the infield that couldn't be duplicated by other duos over four years or varsity experience.

"People ask if we know what is going on in each other minds, Scott said, "but it's more just playing together so much."

They have been together since their earliest Ahwatukee Little League days and both were members of the Ahwatukee team that went to the Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pa. in 2006.

Scott has been on the Pride varsity since the beginning of the season and Sam came up from the junior varsity shortly before Mountain Pointe go into the 5A-I state playoffs this month.

"It was one of those things that we had some guys injured and we brought Sam up to fill the void," explained Mountain Pointe coach Brandon Buck.

Scott plays shortstop and Sam is at second.

"When Sam came up, Sam gloved the first ball in practice hit up the middle and flipped it with his glove over to Scotty," Buck added. "Everyone was saying, ‘What's this' then they did it over and over again. The guys on the team were getting a kick out of it."

When Sam came up, Anthony Balderama move from short to third base.

"I played with them for a couple of years and honestly, I seen them turn in hundreds of double plays," Balderama said.

Buck might have been second-guessed about starting two sophomores on a team that has a good chance to get into the state championship game this Saturday night at Camelback Ranch Stadium in Glendale.

The Pride have 12 seniors on the squad and they provide the leadership, but Buck has also been starting another sophomore, Justin Curletta, at first base and he's had seven hits through the playoffs.

"Scotty had been with us since the summer and you could see he confidence growing," Buck said. "When Sam came up he was on fire. He was hitting almost .400, hitting balls into the gap and driving in runs. Those boys started to build our confidence and everyone wants to see someone roll a double play just to watch them turn it."

After going through the pressure of the Little League playoffs and winning two games at the World Series, the Kingerys are used to pressure.

"We played in front of so many people that playing in a crowd doesn't make us nervous any more," Scott said.

However, that doesn't diminish the importance of playing for the Pride's first state championship.

"In some ways it might not seem as big to some people," Sam said, "but it's the same pressure."

Playing side-by-side on the same infield is natural to them.

"We're quick because we've been doing it so long," Scott said. "It's more of a reaction, but being in the playoffs as sophomores is a lot of fun."

Buck and the rest of the Pride team are having a good time too.

"When they're both out there it's a connection and that makes it fun," Buck said.

 

 

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