East Central finishes strong

Published 12:00 am Saturday, August 2, 2008

VIDALIA — The East Central 18-19-year-old Dixie Majors All-Star team might not have had a lot of practice, but they had enough talent to make quite a run in the state tournament.

The team, which only had a couple of practices before the district tournament began, wound up finishing second in the district tournament and then finished third in the state tournament, which recently concluded in Hammond, La.

The team was based in Vidalia but most of its players were from Natchez, Franklin County and Woodville.

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“We had a real good bunch of players and some with college experience,” coach William Barnes said. “When we put the team together, we only had time for one or two practices. We had players from the whole area on the team, which made it tough to practice.”

However, despite practicing very little before the district tournament, the East Central All-Stars performed well, finishing second, which allowed them to advance to the state tournament.

They lost their first game of the state tournament to Ponchatoula by the score of 2-1, after leaving 13 men on base.

“We were better than Ponchatoula; we just didn’t get the hits in that game,” Barnes said. “We went there a little nervous and didn’t know the type of competition we’d be facing. The only time we had played together as a team was the four games in the district tournament. It was tough.”