Chapin/Newberry wins state tournament opener
A third trip in six years to the American Legion Southeast Regional is a victory away for Chapin/Newberry Post 193/24.
Having wrapped up the Midlands Region title by defeating Greenwood Post 20 in four games, it opened the South Carolina American Legion tournament Monday with a 7-1 victory at Gaffney Post 109.
Price Alexander of Dutch Fork High School belted a pair of 2-run homers and fellow Silver Fox Deric Hanko allowed just three hits on 72 pitches on the mound for the victory. It was the first post-season loss of the season for Gaffney.
Chapin/Newberry will now face Sumter Post 1 in the winner’s bracket at 7 p.m. Wednesday when the tournament moves to Spirit Communications Park, the home of the Columbia Firefies. Post 1 defeated defending state champion and host team Florence 2-1 in eight innings Monday night.
Sumter has won 14 state titles, while Chapin/Newberry is seeking its third since 2013. The last time it won in 2015, Post 193/24 went on to win the Regional and American Legion World Series.
The opening contest at 4 p.m. Wednesday will feature Gaffney and Florence in an elimination game. Opening ceremonies prior to the first game on Wednesday will feature the South Carolina National Guard supporting the event with a Black Hawk helicopter on display for guided tours and the Colors being presented by the Richland County Sheriff’s Department.
Thursday’s 7 p.m. contest will pit the winner of the elimination game against the loser of the winner’s bracket contest. Prior to the game, Newberry native and former Major League Baseball All-Star Billy O’Dell will join Sumter native, multi-World Series champion with the New York Yankees and former University of South Carolina head coach Bobby Richardson in the pregame ceremony.
The championship game will take place Friday at 4 p.m. If a second game is necessary, it will be played at 7 p.m. The two teams who make the final will advance to the Southeast Regional in Asheboro, N.C.