Buckingham Majors have short state run

Published 2:34 pm Tuesday, July 19, 2016

The all-star season came to a close for the Buckingham Majors as they lost 9-6 to the Brunswick All-Stars on Saturday afternoon in the Dixie Youth Major League State All-Star Tournament in Blackstone.

“We had control for pretty much the whole game till the fourth inning,” Buckingham Manager John Toney said. “That’s when errors got us, and they got a bunch of runs off errors.”

His team led 3-0 after the first inning, Brunswick tied the game in the second, Buckingham made it 5-3 in the third, but Brunswick generated six runs in the fourth. Buckingham responded with one run in the fifth but could muster no more.

Unsure exactly what accounted for the turnaround in the fourth, Toney said, “I think some of our kids were nervous because most of them were first years in Majors, so that probably had something to do with it. But for the most part, we played really good this game.”

While he said there were struggles on defense, he added that his team was quite aggressive offensively, enjoying significant success.

“We only struck out one time,” he said. “We ended up with 10 hits.”

Leading the way at the plate for Buckingham was Matthew Davis, who went 3-for-3, George Hurt Jr., who went 3-for-4 and Dalante Woodson, who went 2-for-3. Cody Petersheim, Dillon Kimberlin and Braedyn Schaeffer had one hit apiece.

Woodson got the start on the mound, throwing two strikeouts in two innings. Then Davis relieved him, also logging two strikeouts in two innings, and Justin Gunter finished the game.

Buckingham, which finished as runner-up in the District 4 tourney, opened its play in the state tournament on Friday with a 14-4 loss in five innings to the Colonial Heights All-Stars.

“I feel like we played better than the score said, but we struggled defensively,” Toney said.

Like in the Brunswick game, the fourth inning proved to be a turning point. Trailing only 4-0 after two innings and 7-3 after three, Buckingham was outscored 4-1 in the fourth and 3-0 in the fifth, bringing the mercy rule into effect.

Buckingham had only five hits for the game. Woodson went 2-for-3 with two runs batted in, Hurt went 2-for-3 with an RBI and Kimberlin also contributed an RBI.

Though his team’s state run was brief, Toney was pleased overall with his 2016 roster of all-stars.

“They were there to play baseball and have fun, and they were easy to teach, and they listened well,” he said. “Overall, it was a good group of boys to coach.”