CORINTH – After a one-year hiatus, Monroe County was well-represented in the Northeast Mississippi Coaches Association for Better Baseball all-star games on Saturday at Corinth.
In the 1A/2A game, Hamilton’s Sam Robinson and Smithville’s Presley Keebler played on the East team, while six county players were a part of the 3A/5A game with Amory’s Hunter Jones on the West team and Hatley’s Brody Bickerstaff, Eli Carter and Luke Moffett and Nettleton’s Adam Adkins and Davis Oswalt a part of the East team.
Robinson and Keebler’s East team came away with a dominating 21-3 win under former Smithville assistant coach and current Falkner head coach Brad Barnes.
Both players had a hand in two of the big innings for the East team. In the second, Keebler led off with a walk and stole second, and Robinson singled to right for his first hit of the game as the East squad poured in five runs in the frame.
Keebler led off a nine-run fourth with a base hit to left, stealing another base, and Robinson did as well to drive in a run. Each reached in the final inning in the fifth as Keebler drew his second walk and Robinson reached on an error and stole a base.
Keebler was 1 for 1 with a pair of walks and stolen bases and also received the award for Best Defense for the East team as he split time in right field and at shortstop.
Robinson was 2 for 3 with an RBI and a stolen base and primarily held down the first base spot.
Other awards in the 1A/2A game included Hickory Flat’s Chris Smith getting Best Defense for the West, Biggersville’s Ward Johnson and Tupelo Christian’s Noah Foster with the Best Offense awards for the West and East teams, and the MVPs for each team being Pine Grove’s Cason Jones for the East and Biggersville’s John Eaton for the West.
The 1A Player of the Year was Foster with his coach, Drew Dillard, being the Coach of the Year.
With the county players being split up on both teams in the 3A/5A game, Jones was a part of the West squad which took the 8-2 win over the East.
Oswalt tossed a scoreless first for the East team, surrendering an infield single, but getting a double play and a groundout after that, but the West team struck for four runs in the second inning.
Jones started the scoring off with an RBI single to left to drive in the first run.
Moffett drove in the first run for the East team with an RBI double in the fourth inning, while Bickerstaff had a hit in the third. Adkins was on base twice with a walk and reaching on an error.
On the pitching side, Bickerstaff threw the third inning for the East, while Moffett tossed a scoreless fifth.
Jones also pitched in the fifth with a scoreless inning for the West team, getting a double play.
In the post-game awards, Adkins received the Best Defense award for the East, while Jones received the Riley Presley Memorial Award for sportsmanship.
Other awards included Booneville’s Jackson McCoy and Kevin Williams being the 3A Player and Coach of the Year. The MVPs for the game were Lafayette’s Wilson Varner for the West and New Hope’s Zac Butler for the East. Grenada’s Jayson Swinford was the West’s Best Defense winner, while Houston’s Zach Boren and Belmont’s Avery Kuykendall won Best Offense for the West and East.