Vicksburg 16U team eliminated with tough loss in regional

Published 7:55 am Wednesday, July 25, 2018

The Vicksburg 16U All-Stars didn’t leave the Little League Senior League Southwest Regional with a trophy, but they didn’t leave hanging their heads either.

The Vicksburg squad was eliminated from the double-elimination tournament with a 9-8 loss to Evangeline Little League from New Iberia, Louisiana on Monday night. Evangeline rallied form an early three-run deficit and scored twice in the top of the seventh inning to win.

Vicksburg finished with a 1-2 record, with both losses coming by one run. It also rallied late to beat the Colorado state champion 11-10 in extra innings in its one victory. Vicksburg had fallen into the losers’ bracket after dropping its opener 3-2 to Texas East (Port Lavaca, Texas).

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It was a strong run for a team that is in its first year of Little League affiliation — especially since it was essentially playing up one age division. All but two of Vicksburg’s players are 14 or younger. It won the Mississippi state title by default as the only recreational program in the state affiliated with Little League International, and opted to send its mid-age all-star team to the older regional in nearby Vidalia, La., rather than its own age bracket tournament in New Mexico.

“Most of our girls are 13- and 14-year-old girls that are straight up rec league all-stars,” Vicksburg coach Casey Gordon said. “The girls we were playing are aging out this year. They were 16- and 17-year-old girls. For us to go out there and not have them run over us was phenomenal. We didn’t come back disappointed.”

Gordon also noted that the core of the team should be back for another run, or even two. Only one player is aging out, and one other will do so after next season.

“I’ll only lose one this year that will age out and one more will have one year left,” Gordon said. “The rest we’ll keep for a while.”

About Ernest Bowker

Ernest Bowker is The Vicksburg Post's sports editor. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post's sports staff since 1998, making him one of the longest-tenured reporters in the paper's 140-year history. The New Jersey native is a graduate of LSU. In his career, he has won more than 50 awards from the Mississippi Press Association and Associated Press for his coverage of local sports in Vicksburg.

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