Tourney action heats up

Published 9:59 pm Saturday, July 7, 2012

On Saturday, the Tarheel League District 7 8U, 10U, 12U and 14U All-Stars tournament began at Kehukee and Skewarkee Parks in Williamston and featured teams from Washington, Chocowinity, Bath, Belhaven, Edenton, Jamesville, Perquimans, Williamston, Ahoskie and Plymouth. (WDN Photos/Brian Haines)

WILLIAMSTON — The Tarheel League District 7 All-Stars tournament opened up on Saturday at Kehukee Park in Williamston, and though the temperatures hovered around 100 all day long like a Justin Verlander outing, for district direct Steve Barnes it was like Christmas in July.
The tournament features 8U, 10U, 12U and 14U teams from Washington, Chocowinity, Bath, Belhaven, Edenton, Jamesville, Perquimans, Williamston, Ahoskie and Plymouth. Barnes and his staff have been planning the event since February and upon the conclusion of Day One the district director was pleased with the outcome.
“It was like Christmas in July, I just absolutely loved it,” Barnes said. “To have these kid out here playing as hard as they can and to see the smiles on their faces was great.”
There were plenty of smiles to be seen as the double-elimination tournament had a stellar turnout and Barnes said the participants seemed to be pleased.
“I would say we probably had between 750 to a 1,000 people,” Barnes said. “What really stood out to me today was the patience that the coaches, parents and players had with everybody here at Williamston that was conducting the tournament.
“I talked with our league president Gary Manning and he told me that he had zero complaints all day. It was a very pleasant day and he told me that he heard several players in the younger groups say that were amazed at the facility. He said he heard one of the 8U players say, ‘This is like being in the major leagues.’ It was real exciting.”
In the 8U divisions Ahoskie scored a win over West Martin, Chocowinity topped Belhaven, Jamesville beat West Martin National and Perquimans topped Cashie.
Williamston earned a victory over Chocowinity in the 10U division, while Belhaven topped Ahoskie, West Martin beat Washington 9U and Bath topped Washington 10U.
In the 12U classification Plymouth pressed past Jamesville, Edenton beat Bath, Williamston downed Washington and Belhaven downed Chocowinity.
Ahoskie topped Chocowinity in the 14U division, which was played at Skewarkee Park, but Chocowinity bounced back to beat Riverside shortly after.
A steady, hot sun beamed down on the athletes, umpires an onlookers as the day went on which caused a concern when an umpire temporarily passed out. However, the umpire was promptly attended to and finished the game
“We never had to stop any game play but we did have some concern with an umpire. He finished the game but sat out the next one,” Barnes said.
Barnes recommended a few ways fans could beat the heat for the duration of the tournament.
“I would advise people to bring some cold rags and tents and drink a lot of cold fluid,” Barnes said.
The All-Stars action will resume today at both Skewarkee and Kehukee Parks at 1 p.m.