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By Jim Smith
Special to the Pioneer
The Williston Middle School Baseball team completed a successful 2013 baseball campaign by winning the 2013 SMAC championship tournament, completing a sweep of all the Boys SMAC championships for the 2012-2013 school year.
They defeated Lake Butler 16-6 in the first round of the tournament highlighted by a T.J. Pitts homerun, the pitching of Jerry Mills, Shea Rees and Reggie Days and the defense of Britton Hall, John Carlisle, Will Thompson and others.
On Friday in the tournament semi-finals, the Red Devils faced the strong defense led by Shea Rees, Britton Hall, Reggie Days, Cody Robinson and strong offensive effort by the entire team.
The Red Devils broke open a close game in the top of the 5th inning with eight runs. The Red Devils went on to give Chiefland their first loss of the year 12-3.
The Red Devils then captured the 2013 SMAC championship by defeating Bradford 6-1.
The win was highlighted by another strong pitching performance by Ricky Vanasco, who threw his second complete game of the tournament to lead the way for the Red Devils.
Britton Hall’s triple helped break open a 0-0 contest in the top of the 5th inning.
Hall’s triple sparked a five-run rally to put the Red Devils up 5-0 at the end of five innings. Once again strong pitching and defense kept the opponent in check long enough for the Red Devil offense to have a big inning.
The coaches and players should be commended on their tenacity and never-say-die attitude that led to a successful season.
Although the team struggled early in the year, they battled and worked hard to play their best baseball when it counted at the end of the season.
The 2013 Williston Middle School baseball team consisted of: 8th graders John Carlisle, Reggie Days, Britton Hall, Shea Rees, T.J. Pitts, Will Thompson and Ricky Vanasco; 7th graders Jalen Days, Jerry Mills, Cody Robinson, and Greyson Smith and 6th graders Race Battle, Grayson Geiger, Quavian Johnson, Mike Robinson, Parker Seay and C.J. Strange.
The coaches for the team were Head Coach Greg Yancey and Assistant Coaches Mark Poupard, Kenny Rees and Jim Smith.