All-star teams fall in state tournaments, but the future of baseball looks bright in Selma

Published 7:36 pm Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Baseball season in Selma came to an abrupt close Sunday, as the three local all-star teams still participating in state tournaments lost.

The 11-and 12-year-old, 13-year-old and 14-year-old teams all lost Sunday, ending seasons that saw them advance all the way to state tournaments and just a few wins shy from Selma’s first state championship in a number of years.

Although they were disappointed, together they helped accomplish something that is rare in Selma these days. Along with the Dixie Majors, who hosted the 17-19-year-old state tournament earlier this month, a total of four Selma teams made it all the way to state tournaments this year.

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“I can’t remember in recent history four of our teams going to the state tournament,” said Lebo Jones, baseball and softball director for the Selma Recreation Department. “I’m sure it’s been a while. It’s a pretty big feat.”

Incredibly, none of the four teams won a game once they made it to state tournament play. All four tournaments were double elimination and each team lost their first and second games and were eliminated. This weekend the 13 and 14-year-olds played in Muscle Shoals, while the 11-and 12-year-olds played in Fairhope.

Although they lost, just making it to state level is a big deal, and Jones is more than satisfied with how local teams fared this year.

“The future looks bright,” Jones said. “We’ve got a lot of young kids that can play ball and lots of good players. Just by looking at how far we’ve got, going all the way to state, we obviously have some good players here. They just have to stay interested and keep trying to better themselves.”

Jones said the teams should keep their heads up.

“I think they were disappointed but they got over it pretty quick,” Jones said. “They enjoyed being out of town and being together.”

Selma has a proud baseball history going back in time to the 1980’s, but has not won a state tournament in the last few seasons. Jones said if the current group of players stays together, he thinks that drought will end soon.

“If these kids continue to play, there’s no doubt in my mind that we will win a state tournament,” Jones said. “But sometimes when they get a little older, they may start concentrating on another sport besides baseball. There’ really s a lot of talent in the city right now.”