Opp, Covington County battle in state tournament

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, June 30, 2015


Opp and Covington County’s 10U All-Stars competed in the 2015 10U Cal Ripken State Tournament in Demopolis on Sunday and Monday with Opp going 3-1 and Covington County going 0-4 in the round-robin portion of the tournament.


Opp started off strong winning their first three games before falling to Childersburg 16-2 in game four.


Opp defeated Lineville 17-3, Butler 3-2 and Alex City 7-2.


“We have done really well,” Opp coach Chris Stuard said. “I can’t complain. Our pitching, fielding and base running has been outstanding. The hitting hasn’t been there the whole time, but we have got it done when it matters.”


In the game against Alex City, the game was tied 2-2 heading into the bottom of the fifth inning when Opp produced five runs to take a 7-2 lead.


“If Childersburg wins tonight (Monday), it will come down to a tiebreaker to see who goes on the bracket round and I’m not sure we have the runs to win a tiebreaker,” Stuard said. “But if it ends here, we will have gone 7-1 through district and state and I’m not hanging my head on that and these kids shouldn’t either. I couldn’t be more proud of these boys.”


Struad said that his team has played with one motto this All-Star season, and that is “12 is one,” meaning that they are 12 players playing as one team.


“They have all put in the effort,” Stuard said. “They have done things that I didn’t think were possible. Every one has done their job when the opportunity came up. They have been exactly what a team should be on and off the field. At the hotel, they aren’t separated into three or four small groups, they are all together all the time.”


Stuard said that pitching has been the biggest difference maker for Opp this All-Star season.


“Cale Sumblin has given up just a couple of runs through district and state,” Stuard said. “And Robbie Gafford has pitched an inning or two at the end of six or seven games and hasn’t given up a run in district or state.”


The Covington County 10U All-Stars fought hard, but couldn’t work their way out of the round-robin portion of the state tournament after falling to Demopolis 12-0, Westside 18-5, and Roanoke 7-5. Covington County defeated Monroe County 11-9 on Monday.


In game one of the 10U state tournament, the Covington County 10U All-Stars Demopolis 12-0.


It was a close game through three with Demopolis leading by a score of 1-0, but the Demopolis bats ignited and went on to produce 11 runs in the final two frames.


Micah Turner, Nathan Fowler and Parker Adams all went 2-for-3 in the contest.


Game two didn’t go the way Covington County would have liked either, as they fell to Westside 18-5 in six innings.


“We hit the ball well,” Covington County coach Kyle Adams said. “But we just gave up in the first game. The fourth inning in both games killed us.”


On Monday the Covington County squad squared off with Roanoke and took a 5-0 lead in the first inning.


Covington County clung to a 5-3 lead going into the bottom of the fifth, before ultimately falling to Roanoke 7-5 in six innings.


“We haven’t played a complete game yet,” Adams said. “Today against Roanoke we put together a better overall game.”


At the time the Star-News went to press, it was not yet known if Opp’s 3-1 record would be enough to get them into today’s bracket round.