Let the tourneys begin

Published 8:32 pm Thursday, July 30, 2009

NEDERLAND — For the first time since the late 1970s, Mid-County Senior Babe Ruth is hosting a 17-18-year-old regional all-stars tournament. It starts at 10 a.m. today with a first round matchup between Wharton and Hamburg, Ark.

The eight team, double elimination tournament continues through Monday. The winner advancea to Moses Lake, Wash. for the Babe Ruth World Series.

As usual, the Mid-County team is loaded with talent from all across Southeast Texas, primarily from the Port Neches-Groves and Nederland teams which each did exceptionally well in the Class 4A baseball playoffs this past season.

As with many Mid-County teams, this particular group has had a great deal of success in previous years. Both the 17-year-old and 18-year-old players on this club have enjoyed regional championships in previous years.

Despite the talent, Mid-County did not tally a victory last weekend at the state tournament, losing consecutive games to Wharton with scores of 10-8 and 4-3.

However, Mid-County had little to gain from that weekend since the team had already slated its spot in the tournament bracket.

In total, the eight teams are Mid-County, Wharton, Hamburg, Del Rio, Abbeville, La., Texas Tri-County, Springdale, Ark., and Denham Spring, La.

Mid-County will play Denham Springs at 7 o’clock tonight for its first game. The winner of that matchup returns at 7 p.m. Saturday, while the loser plays at 1 p.m.

MC manager Jimmy Collins said he expects this team to be very competitive in the tournament.

“Our strength is pitching,” he said. “But I know we have the bats. We didn’t show that against Wharton but I think that had a lot to do with our demeanor. The guys knew we were playing in this tournament regardless, so I don’t think our focus was there.”

Collins, a longtime coach and board member, also said he was very pleased that Mid-County Babe Ruth was getting to host a regional again.

“I think this is great for our league and the community,” he said. “There is going to be a lot of good baseball here over the next few days. We hope a lot of people will come out and take advantage of that.”

The tournament will be played at Nederland High School’s Metreyon-Delahoussaye Park. There will be four games Friday, Saturday and Sunday, two games Monday and if necessary, one game Tuesday.

Mid-County All-Stars:

Ryan Brady — Nederland

Jackson Broussard — Nederland

Nick Cardenas — Nederland

Chaz Bruce — Vidor

Anthony Cessac — Bridge City

Josh Dean — Nederland

Taylor Eaves — Hamshire

Ross Foret — Beaumont

Cody Laird — Nederland

Jordan Pitts — Nederland

Conrad Roberts — Nederland

Austin Sangster — Port Neches

Samuel Sparrow — Groves

Chris Sweetenham — Port Neches

Trey Terracina — Nederland

Jude Vidrine — Nederland

Tyler Wilson — Lumberton

Matt Woods — Port Neches

Today’s pairings:

10 a.m. — Wharton vs Hamburg

1 p.m. — Del Rio vs Abbeville

4 p.m. — Tri-Couny vs Springdale

7 p.m. — Mid-County vs Denham Springs

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