Post 102 is ready

Published 12:00 am Thursday, May 25, 2006

AHOSKIE n The Ahoskie American Legion Post 102 Senior Team will open its 2006 baseball season at 7 p.m. Saturday night.

Post 102 will host Snow Hill during the contest that will take place at Hertford County High School.

Post 102, under the direction of Randy Whitaker for the fifth season, returns seven starters from last year’s team.

“This is a versatile team,” Whitaker said. “We have so many players that can play and play well at different positions.”

Those who will see action on the mound this season include several strong performers from local high schools.

Heading that list will be All-State performers Dusty Todd and Judd Whitehead of Lawrence Academy. Also on the mound will be Hertford County High School starters Ryan Matthews and Michael Burton.

Dustin Briggs and Ben Bright of Gates County High School will also see time on the mound as will Lance Thomas, Jed Hughes and Corey Hoggard of Bertie.

Tucker Warren of Williamston will also pitch.

Post 102 also has talent at the catcher’s spot where Aaron Hoggard of Bertie, Matthews and Hughes will all see time.

Manning positions in the infield will be first baseman Heath Britt of Hertford County, Burton and Warren.

Second basemen will include Jacob Harrell of Lawrence Academy, Bright and Matthews. At third will be Burton, Matthews and Whitehead.

Bright, Britt and Todd will see time at shortstop.

Roaming the outfield will be Jobie Thomas of Lawrence Academy, O.J. Dobbin of Bertie, Briggs, Lance Thomas, Bright and Hughes.

“Pitching and defense will be two keys for us this year,” Whitaker said. “We also have some guys who can hit consistently. Most of our players had solid seasons at the plate during the high school year.”

This year the area will be an 11-team conference with the top eight advancing to the double-elimination American Legion playoffs.

Post 102 will be in conference with Edenton, Beaufort County, Snow Hill, Wayne County, Wilson County, Rocky Mount, Kinston, New Bern, Pitt County and Southern Pitt.

Ahoskie will play each team in the league twice for 20 conference games.

“This is a tough conference,” Whitaker admitted. “Our work will be cut out for us. We will be playing good teams every night.

“Our main goal is to finish in the top eight in the conference and make the playoffs,” he added.

Whitaker closed by adding his hope that local fans would continue to support the club.

“I hope local baseball fans will come out and support us,” he said. “That will be a big key to being successful.”