Elkins ready to face state’s best

The Elkins 11-12-year-old All-Star team hopes the momentum it gained during area and district tournament action will carry over into state play.

In winning both of those tournaments, Elkins outscored its five opponents by a count of 88-6 in five games.

But manager Jim Gainer knows his squad will have to be at its best against the 14-team field that will assemble at South Charleston’s Little Creek Park starting on Sunday.

“The competition really steps up down there,” Gainer said. “But we’re excited to compete with the best in the state. We have had good hitting, our pitchers have been solid and we have played good defense to this point.”

Elkins will compete in Pool B, along with Bridgeport and Pineville.

The area All-Star squad will face Bridgeport at 3 p.m. Sunday and Pineville at 8 p.m. Monday.

The top two teams in each of the four pools will advance to a single-elimination tournament that gets underway on Wednesday.

“Our first goal is to advance out of our pool as one of the top two teams,” Gainer said. “From there it will be single elimination, and in baseball, anything can happen.”

Members of the Elkins All-Star squad are Cole Crumm, Noah Carr, Jeremy Coger, Read Schumacher, Grant Simmons, Caleb Haas, Andrew Hart, Elliot White, Matthew Gainer, Jon Phillips, Jessie Williams, Thomas Talkington and Beau Bright.

Gainer will be assisted by Steve Schumacher and Jessie Williams.

Other teams competing in the tournament include Tygarts Valley, South Charleston, St. Albans and Bi-State in Pool A, Barboursville, Beckley, Martinsburg and Shady Spring in Pool C and Fairmont, Madison and Huntington in Pool D.

The championship game is scheduled for 6 p.m. on Friday.

The winner of the tournament advances to regional competition in Warner Robins, Ga.