Washington, Hurricane are baseball luminaries at states
Even though it will be Morgantown’s first trip to the baseball state tournament since 1976 it will be Washington, Hurricane and St. Albans that will draw most of the media’s writers and television crews at Appalachian Power Park when this week’s event begins.
Hurricane was ranked first in the various rating services, but had to survive a loss in the best-of-three Regional series against Ripley just to get into the Class AAA field.
Washington eliminated Jefferson in its Sectional and then topped Hedgesville by scores of 4-1 and 16-2 in the Region 2 series between those two teams.
St. Albans lost the first game of the best-two-of-three series versus Greenbrier East but then defeated the Spartans twice, the last being a comfortable 12-3 decision.
Morgantown got past Wheeling Park to join the other three teams in Charleston.
In the Class AA ranks, it was Weir winning two-of-three against Berkeley Springs to get one berth at the state tournament. Bridgeport, the likely favorite in Charleston, eliminated Braxton County in two games to join the Red Riders in the state event.
James Monroe lost its first game to Independence but then won the next two games, and Wayne beat Logan twice in two games to complete the four-team Class AA field.
Wheeling Central Catholic stopped Tyler Consolidated in two straight Region 1 games in the small-school ranks.
Also winning its way to Charleston was Tygarts Valley, which lost a one-run decision to East Hardy but then defeated the Cougars in two straight games.
Charleston Catholic beat Greater Beckley Christian in the Region 3 matchup, and Ravenswood got past Buffalo to give the Class A field its final entrant.
Unlike the Sectional and Regional tournaments, the State Tournament is a single elimination event that gives any team little room for mistakes.
If the weather in Charleston cooperates, all three classes will crown their champions on Saturday.