The Legion Baseball Player of the Year helped lead Alabama’s 1st team to win the title since 1967
Brooks Bryan knew Troy (Alabama) Post 70 had a winning tradition when he joined their program this season.
What he didn’t understand was how cursed the team had been in domestic competition until he and his 2022 teammates took matters into their own hands and turned it around.
That’s why there was so much joy and celebration after Tuesday’s American Legion World Series title after Troy’s 6-5 victory over Idaho Falls (Idaho) Post 56.
It was Alabama’s first ALWS championship since Tuscaloosa won the state’s first title in 1967.
“I really didn’t know how much Alabama struggled until we started watching it after we won the regional,” said Bryan, whose Post 70 team was making its first ALWS appearance and fifth appearance. Alabama overall. “We were like, ‘We haven’t won in a while, so let’s do it. “”
Post 70 did it in a historic and biting way.
Not only has Troy won three straight games after trailing, but Post 70’s win after leading 5-0 in Tuesday’s final is the biggest deficit overcome in ALWS Championship game history.
“If you ask these guys in years what’s the best thing they’ve done, I bet they’ll say, win this and be in this environment,” Troy coach Ross Hixon said of of the Post 70 ALWS title race at Keeter’s Veterans Field. Shelby Stadium, NC “This team has created 18 Legion supporters for life. They’ll be watching this tournament for the rest of their lives now because it’s such a great product.
Bryan was honored for his contribution to that championship effort by being named the 2022 George W. Rulon American Legion Player of the Year and to the All-Tournament Team.
Signed in December 2021 with Troy University out of Opelika High School, Bryan hit .500 in national competition at the American Legion Baseball Tournament with one home run and 11 RBIs.
He also helped Troy win his sixth straight Alabama State title and his first regional and ALWS titles.
At Shelby, Troy routed Shrewsbury (Mass.) Post 397, 13-1, in six innings in their opener before losing 6-3 to Camden (SC) Post 17.
This made each of their next three matches must-have contests if Troy were to achieve his lofty goal of an ALWS title.
Trailing 3-0 after 5 innings 1-2, Post 70 scored four times in the bottom of the sixth inning to defeat League City (Texas) Post 554 to win their division.
In the semifinals, Troy fell behind 3-0 again, this time against Midland (Mich.) Post 165, before rallying for a 5-3 win.
And in Tuesday’s championship game, Post 70 trailed 5-0 after two innings before scoring three times apiece in the third and seventh innings to rally two-time defending champion Idaho Falls. The last two runs of the seventh-inning rally came after two outs.
Idaho Falls was looking to become the first team in ALWS history to win three consecutive titles.
“I have to surrender to my coaches,” Bryan said. “Coach Russ (Hixon) and Coach DJ (Laws) always keep us in it. And we never give up no matter what. We played hard until the end of every game. And we came back to win in the last three games.