Louisiana state champion Post 125 will be the first-round opponent for Washington Post 218 Thursday night at the American Legion Mid-South Regional Tournament in New Orleans.
Washington will face the host team, which also claimed the Louisiana state title, in the first day’s final game at Kirsch Rooney Stadium in New Orleans.
“We are looking forward to playing in New Orleans against our first-round opponent Retif Oil,” Post 218 Manager Mike Gardner said. “They are the Louisiana state champ so we expect them to be a very good team. But we are a very good team and have beaten some very good teams in winning the Blue Springs Wood Tournament, district, zone, and state tournaments. If we come out and just be who we are with good pitching, solid defense and timely hitting, then we are capable of not only winning our first game but the regional championship.”
The game is expected to start around 7:30 p.m. Thursday night. There will be a number of ways to follow the game, including through the American Legion Game Tracker system, http://www.legion.org/baseball/tournaments/midsouth.
There also will be The Missourian iScore webcast (/http://data.iscorecentral.com/iscorecast/baseball/scorecast, enter code bef3bbfc65) where you also can see a webcast of the game as well as all of the Post 218 zone and state games.
KLPW plans to broadcast games as well and there could be additional webstreamed broadcasts.
Post 125, which represents Crescent City (New Orleans) and is sponsored by Retif Oil, has posted a 32-4 record this season. The team was locked into the host spot prior to the Louisiana state tournament, which was contested last week in Lafayette, La.
The Retif Oil team is based out of Jesuit High School in New Orleans.
The Oilers received strong pitching during the Louisiana state tournament, getting 22 innings of hitless pitching.
In the championship game against Hahnville, La., St. Charles Post 131 Otto Candies, Retif Oil won, 5-2.
The team, managed by Joey Latino, received back-to-back no-hitters in the state event before finally allowing hits and runs against Otto Candies.
According to NOLA.com, two of the team’s pitchers are going to Division I programs this fall. Jonathan Hess is walking on at Alabama while Emerson Gibbs will play for Tulane.
Hess threw a 13-0 no-hit win over Peake BMW while C.J. Arvrard won on a no-hitter against the Abbeville 29ers.
Gibbs was the winning pitcher in the first meeting against Otto Candies. And Cody Migliore threw an 11-1 win over Abbeville in the state tournament opener.
Louisiana has 35 registered teams (four are Juniors) this season according to the American Legion national baseball website. Otto Candies, as the state runner-up, will occupy the Louisiana state winner spot in the bracket at the regional tournament.
Washington (39-8) earned the Missouri state title, its first crown since 1989, by beating Creve Coeur Post 397 in the winner-take-all game Saturday in Sedalia, 9-1.
Like its first-round opponent, Washington received strong pitching throughout the event with Tony Helfrich, Brendan Kleekamp and Brendan Feldmann earning victories.
The Washington-Retif Oil game will take place after the opening ceremonies, scheduled to run between the two games of the evening doubleheader.
Action begins Thursday at 9:30 a.m. with Mississippi Champion Hattiesburg Post 24 taking on Alexander, Ark., Post 298.
The Hub City Bombers (17-3) will be trying to follow up on fellow Mississippi team Tupelo’s success last season. Tupelo lost in the national championship game to Eden Prairie, Minn., in 13 innings, 5-4.
Mississippi has nine registered Legion teams (two are Juniors) this summer.
The Post 328 Bryant Black Sox carry a 33-5 record into the regional tournament. Arkansas had 71 registered Legion teams this season.
The second game of the morning doubleheader has significance for Post 218 because it will play the team earning the same result in the second round.
That game, which starts a half-hour after the conclusion of the first contest, features the Hays, Kan., Post 173 Eagles and Columbia, Tenn., Post 19.
Hays, which won its first state title since 1981, carries the most wins of any team in the tournament and is 45-8. Columbia is 32-15 on the season.
Hays played in the Blue Springs Wood Bat Tournament this season, going 1-2 in its pool play. That pool included Blue Springs Post 499 Fike, BNVW Huskies of Blue Valley, Kan., and the Central Spartans.
Central, a Ninth District team, beat Hays in pool play, 5-3. Hays did beat another Ninth District team, Elsberry, in the crossover game at Blue Springs, 9-4.
Kansas has 105 registered teams this season.
Columbia booked its trip to Louisiana with a 3-2 win in 10 innings against Shelbyville. Post 23 in the winner-take-all game Sunday.
Tennessee has 18 registered Legion teams this season.
The afternoon doubleheader Thursday opens with Otto Candies (26-14) taking on the Oklahoma winner Edmond Sandlot Baseball of Edmond, Okla., (26-14) at 4:30 p.m.
Oklahoma had 15 teams in its department this season.