14U team looks to gain experience

Published 9:18 am Saturday, July 18, 2009

West Alabama’s 14-year-old all-star team is gearing up for its tournament run in Huntsville.

The team is just learning who it is after not getting the experience of playing in a district tournament game.

“(Wednesday was) the first day we have played anyone other than ourselves,” said head coach Kevin May of a practice game held with the West Alabama 13-year-old all-stars.

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“No one else in our district was able to field a 14-year-old team and that makes it harder to see what you have going into it,” May said. “But we are going to be as ready as we can get.”

May’s squad has only been able to practice together for the past week before heading into today’s competition.

“We still have to get a little sharper. These guys have to get used to playing with each other. We may have to use a couple of those games in the tournament just to work the kinks out,” May said.

May said that this year’s squad made it through due to the league’s small numbers.

“There weren’t as many choices at the 14-year-old level because the numbers in the league were down, but that won’t stop us,” May said.

Pitching will be, if nothing, deep for this West Alabama squad as it heads into today’s play.

“We don’t really have any power arms, but we have four or five guys who can throw strikes. So we are going to have to be real solid defensively,” May said.

That defense will have to come from leaders Payne Hasty and Wesley Anderson as well as the seven others who will take the field with them.

Offense will be a mystery for the 14U team.

“We don’t really know what we have at the plate. Having yet to see live pitching makes it a little harder to judge what you can do up there,” said May.

The West Alabama team will fight this weekend and look to return to Demopolis with solid experience and maybe a state title.