By Les Dixon / Sports Editor
PRESTONSBURG — The resilient North Laurel 11-year-old All-Stars are now one win away from capturing the 11-year-old state championship after holding on Thursday to knock off the Warren County-South All-Stars, 8-7. Since losing to the Campbellsville All-Stars 1-0 to open state tournament play, Jason VanHook’s squad has been impressive baseball on the diamond, but they’re not the only Tri-County team that will be playing for a state championship today.
The Knox County 11-12-year-old All-Stars punched their ticket into the 11-12-year-old state title game Thursday by rolling past Campbellsville Thursday, 4-2.
North Laurel 8, Warren County-South All-Stars 7
It didn’t take North Laurel long to jump out on Warren County-South, as Blake VanHook connected with a two-run homer in the first inning, leading to an 8-7 win for his team.
It wasn’t an easy win, though.
North Laurel led 6-3 going into the top of the fifth inning before seeing Warren County-South tie the game with three runs at 6-6, but VanHook’s squad responded with two runs in the bottom of the inning to take an 8-6 edge.
Warren County-South added a run in the top of the sixth, cutting its deficit to 8-7, but Ty Baker forced a ground out to wrap-up the win for North Laurel.
“Our kids never give up,” VanHook said. “This was a big win for us.”
Colby Howard picked up the win on the mound, tossing five innings while striking out five batters, while Blaine Miller tossed two/thirds of an inning before seeing Baker get the save.
Baker also connected with his first home run during the win, while driving in two runs and Charlie Key went 2-for-4 with two RBIs.
Knox Co. 4, Campbellsville 2
Knox County jumped on Campbellsville early and managed to hold on to advance to the state title game for the second straight year.
“This was a good win. We’re one game away,” Knox County coach Scott Payne said.
Thomas Jackson picked up the win on the mound while Tucker Holland came in for the save. Knox County will play North Oldham today in a rubber match. North Oldham knocked Payne’s squad out two years ago in the semifinals, but Knox Central got revenge last year in the state title game. Game time is set for 6 p.m.
North Laurel/Knox County are one win away from winning State Titles
By Les Dixon / Sports Editor
- Local Sports
The Williamsburg Yellow Jackets are partying like it's 1987! That was the last time the Jackets won a game in the 13th Region Tournament, and they ended the 27-year drought with a 47-44 win over the heavily-favored Knox Central Panthers on Thursday night.
Les Dixon's Daily Region Pick'Em
When it comes to picking region tournament games, it’s not an easy task to say the least. This is the most parity that I’ve ever seen in the 13th Region Boys and Girls Tournaments.
If Clay County’s play during the first game of the 13th Region Tournament is any indication of things to come, Robert Marcum’s squad could be well on its way of capturing their second straight 13th Region championship.
The Way it is
Since I’m picking Corbin to pull off the upset against Jackson County today, I figured I’d give my top five upsets dating back to 2005-06 when the 13th realigned and welcomed both North and South Laurel high schools to the mix.
Tony Pietrowski’s Corbin Redhounds have been favored during the past two first round 13th Region match-ups, and have been upset both times. Corbin is hoping things might change a bit this time around.
Barbourville will have hands full against Bell County today
Dinky Phipps’ Barbourville Tigers are looking for their first 13th Region Tournament win dating back to 2006’s tournament when they defeated Clay County in the regional semifinals.
Like It or Not
There’s an elephant in the room at this year’s 13th Region Tournament, and really in basketball in general, and I guess I’ll be the first one to point it out (publicly with my name attached to it).
Chris' Daily Region Pick'Em
With the first three days of opening round games in the books, I can honestly say I'm not surprised that I'm 4-2 overall when it comes to my pick'ems record.
You can never count out the Clay County Lady Tigers when it comes to the 13th Region Tournament.
Les Dixon's Daily Region Pick'em
After going just .500 during the girls games, things are going to get even tougher when it comes to picking the 13th Region Boys Tournament games.
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