A glimpse into the Pam Pack’s future

Published 3:20 pm Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Monday marked the season opener for summer baseball at Washington. The Pam Pack hosted Conley with a game between the two teams’ junior varsity squads, serving as a sort of prelude.

It was more than just a prelude to the varsity game, though. It offered coach Kevin Leggett and the Pam Pack faithful a glimpse into the future of the baseball program. A lot of the players on the JV summer team will slot into the JV team next spring while others will be continuing their middle school careers.

“It was good to give the young guys a chance to play and give me a chance to evaluate for the future and see what we have going forward,” Leggett said. “It’s a good way (for them) to see what’s coming and get to know the coaches and what we expect from them.

“With the younger team, it’s more about evaluating and helping them out and teaching them the fundamentals because they don’t always get it at the middle school level. … I hope they’re playing consistent (by the end of the summer) and are prepared for when they come to high school.”

The Pam Pack youth kicked things off with a win over the Viking youngsters, too. They pulled ahead early with two runs in the first inning and hung on for a 3-2 victory.

With one out in the first, Bryson Brooks gave the offense an early spark by singling to centerfield. Logan Everette then drew a walk and Hunter Hall reached on an error. Conley handed Washington its two first-inning runs by hitting Wilson Peed with a pitch and walking Jeremiah Moore.

Everette, who toed the rubber to start the game, retired the side in order in the second. It set up Washington to add another run in the bottom of the frame. Hayden Anderson led off with a base hit to right field and promptly stole second base. He came across when Cody Pinkham singled through the left side.

Washington made its first pitching change of the game, swapping out Everette for Paul Skirko. He struggled with control early on as he hit a batter and walked another. Both came across for runs. However, after Conley pulled within one, he settled in quickly and induced back-to-back groundouts to preserve the lead.

Skirko did more of the same in the fourth and fifth innings, too, by stranding a runner in each frame. Moore took the mound for the sixth and final inning. Conley threatened with two runners in scoring position, but Moore recovered and helped earn the Pam Pack its first win by striking out the side.

“They were a little shaky in spots, but they threw strikes and did what we needed them to do,” Leggett said. “If it wasn’t for a few walks, it would be a 3-0 game probably. There’s nothing wrong with that. Overall, I was pretty pleased with the pitching.”

Even if the league is focused more on development and teaching, it was nice to open the season with a victory. Washington traveled to Conley for a rematch on Tuesday, hoping for the summer sweep.