Tahlequah Daily Press


May 9, 2012

All-star send-off

Whittmore, Tahlequah players lead South to exhibition victory.

MUSKOGEE — Generally in all-star games, offenses dominate. That was the case Tuesday night as 47 of Green Country’s most talented senior soft ball players formed four teams and matched up in a doubleheader at Rougherette Park in the seventh annual Green County All Star games.

Although the teams were divided into North, South, East and West, rosters were determined more by position players than where they were from. Each game had a coach of the year and player of the year honored before the contest. The East and West squads squared off in the first game, which was won by the west 14-10. The second game saw the North and South teams play with the South team running away with a 22-5 victory.

“This game was started in 2006 to honor seniors on this side of the state,” said organizer Keith Coleman, Muskogee High softball coach. “A lot of these girls will make All-State and it’s a great way to see them play and honor them for their careers at these schools.”

The East and West squads were scoreless until the third inning when the East banged out six straight hits, with Red Oak’s Asiah Sumpter triple being the big hit of seven-run inning.

The West tied it up in the fourth inning with Justice Johnson of Roland getting a two-RBI hit and a big triple by Heavener’s Jordan Kannady, which scored a pair. They got two more in the fifth inning to take the lead 9-7, and the East got one back in the bottom of the inning to make it a one run game, 9-8.

The West broke it open with five runs in the top of the seventh with Johnson starting it off with a base hit. Three batters later Logan Hinds of Heavener picked up her third RBI of the game, and a two RBI double by Kelsie Beck of Sallisaw finished it off. Hinds was named the most valuable player of the game, going 3 for 4 with an RBI and three runs scored.

In the second game, the South squad — made up primarily of players from Tahlequah, Sequoyah and Union— hammered the North. Speedster Brianna Evans of Union started things off with a triple as the South got three runs in the opening inning and never looked back.

The South scored 22 runs on 22 hits and were helped out by six errors on the North defense.

Union’s Alexis Riley and Courtney Dobson both finished 2 for 4 with three RBIs for the South. Tahlequah’s Kaitlenn Rippetoe chipped in, going 3 for 4.

Rippetoe’s regular-season teammate, Whittney Whittmore, though, stole the show offensively, smacking three hits in five at-bats to go along with three runs scored and two RBIs on a soaring home run to left.

Whittmore’s offensive numbers earned her the game’s most valuable player honors.

“Tonight I was just trying to have fun and get rid of some of the left over pressure from state,” Whittmore said. “I just wanted to do well in my last softball game before I graduate.”

Vian’s Chelsie Drew led the way for the North offense with a home run, three RBIs and a run scored. Muskogee’s lone senior, Coco Epps was 0 for 3 on the night.

Hulbert coach David Young, who took the Riders to the state tournament, was honored as one of the coaches of the year, as was Tahlequah’s Matt Cloud.

Receiving player of the year honors were Hulbert’s MaKayla Young, who finished the year with a .595 batting average and 51 runs batted in, and Drew, who led Vian with 53 RBIs and 18 home runs this season.

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