Region II All-Stars kick off youth baseball tournament


Greg Knight

The 2013 Wrangell All-Stars. From left: Ryan Soeteber, Coach Deveril Bloom, Kellen Eagle, Elizabeth Johnson, Cori Johnson, Stone Guggenbickler, Tara Stutz, Riley Blatchley, Jacob Hammer, Tymon Teat, Coach Glenn Smith, Mikel Smith and Dillon Rooney.

Youth baseball came to Wrangell in a big way last weekend as the 2013 All-Stars tournament for Southeast Alaska kicked off at the diamonds near the Nature Trail.

The competition featured teams from Wrangell, Petersburg, Ketchikan, Sitka, Prince of Wales Island and Juneau.

Coach Glenn Smith said hosting the tournament in Wrangell was good for the nearly 100 players, visiting families, and the local community.

“One of the things I like about the tournament being here in Wrangell is that it gives us an opportunity to be a good host to parents and players from Southeast,” Smith said. “Even though there are three other cities in Southeast that are also well qualified to host a tournament like this, for our kids it’s good to see that we were picked and for them to get to play against the best kids picked from other town’s teams. It’s great for the community as well because we have put a lot of work into the ball field out there. There has been a multitude of folks that have helped us get it ready.”

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In terms of his team’s play on the field, Smith said his team held their own despite two losses early on in the tournament.

“We don’t have a whole lot of players to pick from here in Wrangell, but we do have a bunch of great players out there for our team,” Smith added. “The very first game with Juneau we held them and were ahead by a run for the first two innings. The kids lost composure a little bit after that, against the more experienced kids from Juneau. We had a real good game though.”

Juneau’s team, the Gastineau Channel Little League Majors, easily came out in the front of the pack last year as they blanked all other competitors to move on to the competition in San Bernardino, though they did not advance at that event.

The State Tournament will also be in Wrangell and will be held from July 24-29. The winner of that tournament will then go on to play at the Northwest Regional in San Bernardino, Calif., August 2-10. The winner of the Regional will then move on to the World Series in Williamsport, Penn., August



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