Legion players are honored
Although they came up short in the American Legion District 15 Tournament, Cassville's Irwin-Easley Post #118 club enjoyed a remarkable year. Coached by Jeremy Marple and Roger Brock, the team went 27-6 for the season and finished second to Carthage at the district tournament.
Nine seniors representing four different high schools combined to lead the team through an exciting and successful season. Eight of those seniors will be playing baseball at the next level:
* Zach Campbell, of Blue Eye, and Ricky Vanderpool, of Cassville, will be playing at Missouri Southern State University in Joplin.
* Jon Riley, of Blue Eye, and Trevor Tanner, of Cassville, will be playing at Labette Community College in Parsons, Kan.
* Josh Hartin, of Southwest, will be playing both baseball and basketball at Missouri Valley College in Marshall.
* James Musick, of Wheaton, will be playing at Ozark Christian College in Joplin.
* Travis Northern, of Cassville, will be playing at Crowder College in Neosho.
* Kyle Rhea, of Cassville, will be playing at Baker University in Lawrence, Kan.
Cassville's Colton Beck is the only senior of the nine not playing college ball next season. He will be attending classes as a regular student at Crowder.
At the team's annual post-season picnic and awards ceremony, Marple and Brock handed out game balls to commemorate season milestones and team-leading performances:
* Josh Hartin: highest batting average, .526, and most RBI, 54.
* Josh Hartin and Zach Campbell: most home runs, tied at four.
* Jon Riley: most stolen bases, 18.
* Kyle Rhea: most pitching wins, six.
The Most Valuable Player Award was presented to Hartin.
On behalf of the team, Northern presented St. Louis Cardinals tickets to Marple, Brock, Pete Landstad and Jerry Marple in appreciation of their service to the American Legion team.