BY DEAN HOCKNEY
KOKOMO, Ind. – Fresh from winning the Kokomo Regional, the American Legion Post 6 baseball team had high expectations entering the 2018 Indiana State Finals at cfd Investments Stadium in Highland Park. Unfortunately, the Sixers met a state power in the second round and could not emerge from the loser’s bracket the next day.
With T.J. Macaluso on the hill for the opening game against Cicero Post 341, Kokomo came away with a 7-1 victory. Macaluso went the distance, scattering six singles, one earned run and six strikeouts over the course of the seven-inning contest.
At the plate, Pat Mills led the offense with a two-run home run and double in four plate appearances. Breven Sanford doubled and scored three times from the leadoff spot while Noah Hurlock had a single and two runs scored. Brayden Clark also doubled and singled for the Sixers.
Kokomo Post 6 (21-10) ran into a buzz-saw in game two against perennial state power Terre Haute Post 346. Sixer starter Ben Harris gave up five runs in the first inning and Kokomo never recovered in a 9-2 loss. Zach White led the offense with two singles and an RBI. Sanford added an RBI single.
The next afternoon, Post 6 fell to South Bend Post 151 by a score of 3-2 in an elimination game. Pat Mills took the loss, giving up three runs on eight hits over the course of five innings. Nate Hemmerich slammed the door on South Bend with two no-hit innings. Peyton Tracy led the offense with a three-hit game.
Kokomo manager Don Andrews, 189-89 in eight seasons with a pair of state runners-up finishes, will waste little time in selecting next year’s squad. Post 6 will conduct try-outs for the 2019 season on Aug. 4-5 at cfd Investments Stadium.
On Aug. 4, 17-under try-outs for pitchers and catchers will be at 9 a.m. and position players at 10 a.m. 19-under pitchers and catchers will try-out at noon and position players at 1 p.m.
On Aug. 5, 17-under pitchers and catchers will try-out at 1 p.m. with position players to follow at 2 p.m. 19-under pitchers and catchers will try-out at 4 p.m. and position players at 5 p.m.
For more information, contact Andrews by text at (765) 453-5569 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
EDITOR’S NOTE: The Indiana State Finals ended after the publication deadline.