Series bound

Published 8:08 pm Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The Troy Junior Boys tournament team is bringing home a state title, this after defeating Hueytown 9-4 in the championship game of the state tournament Tuesday.

With the win, Troy will move on to represent Alabama at the Junior Dixie Boys Baseball 2009 World Series, beginning August 1 in Enterprise.

Head coach Sam Kitchens was happy with his team’s performance at the state tournament.

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“It was just fantastic,” Kitchens said. “We played well down here and we were able to get the job done.”

Kitchens said pitcher Blake Craft might have been the key to victory in the title game.

“Blake Craft was just awesome,” Kitchens said. “He pitched the first six innings for us and he was just lights out.”

While Troy wound up winning by five runs, the in did not come easy for the Junior Boys.

“It was a nip and tuck kind of game through the first few innings, but we were finally able to blow the game open there toward the end of the game,” Kitchens said. “It was good to be able to come up with the big win.”

Even though Troy was able to bring home a state title, there wasn’t too much celebration. This team knows it has more to accomplish.

“They’re real excited,” Kitchens said. “They didn’t go too crazy, but they had a real good time. It was fantastic to be able to see them enjoying it.”

The Junior Boys will begin their preparations for the World Series Thursday, just over nine days from their opening game against Arkansas at the World Series.

“We’ll probably start with a short practice Thursday,” Kitchens said. “We have a few things to work on.”

While the team may have been good enough to win state, Kitchens said they would have to improve in all areas of the game in order to be truly ready to compete at the World Series.

“We’ve got to improve our defense and we’ll need to tighten up our pitching and our hitting a little,” Kitchens said.

The Troy Junior Boys tournament team will open play at the World Series August 1 at 4 p.m. against Arkansas at Filed 3 of the Enterprise Recreational Complex.