Commonwealth Games baseball ends with North capturing gold

North All-Star Sean Morgan connects on a RBI sac-fly in the North's 5-0 gold medal win Sunday afternoon.
North All-Star Sean Morgan connects on a RBI sac-fly in the North’s 5-0 gold medal win Sunday afternoon.

The gold medal game in the 2013 Commonwealth Games baseball tournament came down to a stellar pitching performance that led the North All-Stars to a convincing 5-0 win over the East team Sunday afternoon at Kiwanis Field in Salem.

North starter Joseph Williams and reliever Reid Frazier held the East to only one hit in combining for the shutout win in the 24th annual event. North infielder Scott Walter was the key offensive player, smacking two hits, collecting one RBI and scoring a run. The North scored first with a pair of runs in the bottom of the fourth and added three insurance runs in the sixth.

In the bronze medal game, the Central All-Stars came from behind to defeat the West All-Stars 9-3. The West led 2-0 early in the game, but the Central team exploded the rest of the way, outscoring their opponents 9-1 in the 7-inning matchup.

All-Star baseball coordinator Wally Beagle kept the tournament moving smoothly, despite rain that affected Saturday’s pool play and a lightning delay midway through the gold medal contest that, along with dark skies and spotty rain, seemed destined to prevent the tournament’s conclusion.

The 16-man West squad, made up of players from Charlottesville all the way west to Bristol, included several Roanoke Valley players. They included Hayes Nelson (Hidden Valley), Tanner Willis (William Byrd), Matt Doughty (North Cross) and Adam Thompson (Lord Botetourt), along with West head coach Rodney Spradlin (William Byrd). It was Spradlin’s 21st year coaching in the Commonwealth Games of Virginia.

The 2013 Subway Commonwealth Games’ main weekend is set for July 19th-21st, with the opening ceremonies and many of the key competitions taking place in Roanoke.

By Bill Turner

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