By Josh Beavers
All-Star teams were in action over the weekend, and Minden squads did well in competition.
The Pony Tails took first place in the district tournament over the weekend in Ruston.
Lila Huddleston, Izzy McMillon, and Sariyah Gill were lights out for the Pony Tails during the competition. Addison Chandler, Ameila Lott, Kynzie Smith, and Lainey Gates were also dynamic for the team in winning the competition.
Coach Cody James said the girls were looking forward to state action, but he wanted to make a special comment about three girls. Aynslea Maus, Tatum Oliver, and Gracen Sparks were all told they were too old to play in the all-stars competition just a couple of days before play began. Instead of sulking, the girls were on hand all tournament long and provided moral support for the girls playing.
“They were the biggest supporters you could ask for,” James told the Journal.
The 11 and under boys team, skippered by Chris Williams, took the runner-up spot in the tournament this past weekend.
“We only were able to practice together for about two weeks,” Williams told the Journal Monday morning. “I’ve never seen more ‘fight back’ in a team I’ve coached.”
Williams said there are some small things to fix during practice, but the team has a great chance to gel and challenge at the state level.
The team defeated Bossier 6-5 on the strength of awesome play by Chris Whitehead, Tristan Grigsby, Kaleb Rolen, Hayden Williams and Colton Jellum. Whether it was timely hits or power on the pitcher’s mound, the Minden team powered its way to a place in the state tournament later this summer.
Against Shreveport, the team had several standouts including Bryson Finley and Riley Lott in addition to other players. Jake Ogelsby and Luke Stanford provide key offense and defense as well as Peyton Campbell.
The state tournament is July 9-11 in Tioga.
The Sweetees took second place in the weekend tournament and will play July 9 in the state tournament set for Alexandria.
Laikyn Lewis had an inside-the-park home run that scored two runs. Other big performers for the Sweetees included Lexie Perryman, Aubrey Chandler, Laikyn Hollingsworth, Harper Barnette and Marley Bogues.
The 7 and under all-stars will play in the Haughton tournament in July following a strong showing over the weekend.
Players who made an impact include Grayson Crawford, Jamison Russell, Beau Monday, Warren Johnson, Gavin and Gunner Sparks and Rendrick McClendon.
“They all did a great job and got good hits,” Coach Justin Crawford told the Journal. “I could lose 100 games and be happy so long as I had the hard work that those players gave this weekend.
PHOTO CAPTION: The 11 and under all-stars were one of several Minden teams to do well over the weekend.