Gloucester Post 75 finishes as state runner-up team
The Gloucester American Legion Post 75 Junior Baseball players were the runners-up in the American Legion State Tournament last week after climbing out of the loser’s bracket.
The team similarly broke out of the loser’s bracket to win the American Legion District 3 Tournament earlier this month. That championship earned the Gloucester boys the state tourney berth.
In the state event, Gloucester first downed the Colonial Heights Post 284 Pirates, 8-4. Post 75 scored six first-inning runs, highlighted by a two-run double from Wesley Kellum. Tanner Payne had three of the team’s nine hits and Nick Brandt pitched a complete game, giving up four hits while striking out six.
Gloucester suffered its first defeat, 4-3, at the hands of Oscar Smith Post 280. Post 75 took a 3-0 lead but Post 280 rallied in the late innings, scoring a run in the sixth to tie it and one in the seventh for the win. Tristen Spears had two hits for Post 75 and Ridge Motley and Jay May had an RBI each. Kellum pitched the complete game brilliantly, giving up three hits and striking out three.
Post 75 got back on the winning track with a 7-1 defeat of Winchester Post 21. Brady Hudgins had three hits and three RBIs to pace Gloucester, Motley contributed three hits and an RBI and Zack Jarocz added two hits and an RBI. Bret Lindsay walked one and struck out six in the complete game win.
In one of the most exciting tournament games, Post 75 rallied for a seventh-inning tie and won, 4-3, in eight innings over the Post 284 Buccaneers. Gloucester took a 1-0 lead in the second on an RBI single from Lindsay that scored Spears. Brandt hit an RBI double to score Payne in the third to make it 2-0.
Grayson Womble shut down the hard-hitting Bucs for four innings before yielding two runs in the fifth. He was relieved by Hunter Martin in the sixth with a runner on second and no outs. Martin escaped trouble after giving up just one run, but the Bucs held a 3-2 advantage going into the seventh.