Sunday’s championships games at Appalachian Power Park brought an end to the 2019 high school baseball season.
Moorefield won its second straight Class A title, while Bridgeport again proved itself to be the best team in Class AA.
In Class AAA, St. Albans grabbed its second state title in the last three years led by a talented group of seniors, including WVU-signee Jake Carr.
Outside of Charleston Catholic, it has been a bit of a dry spell for Region 3 teams when it comes to baseball championships.
Wyoming East last won the Class AA title back in 2012 with a 1-0 decision over Herbert Hoover and Princeton captured the Class AAA title that same year with a 7-4 win over Nitro.
Since 2010, Region 3 has had four teams finish runner-up, the last of which was PikeView in 2016.
Could 2020 be the year that Region 3 gets back in the championship circle? Maybe, but it will not be easy for sure.
In Class AAA around the state, Hurricane will again be loaded. The Redskins lose Coastal Carolina signee, Jonathan Blackwell, but they will return a bucket load of talent from a team that finished runner-up to St. Albans.
Around our area, Woodrow Wilson will take a heavy hit from graduation and will have numerous holes to fill. Greenbrier East, on the other hand, may be a team to watch next season. The Spartans return a legitimate ace in Hunter Ridgeway along with several solid players.
If the Spartans can find their bats, they could be a contender for a trip to Charleston.
Class AA in Region 3 was a tough battle this year and next year should be just as rugged.
Shady Spring won the regional title, but they too will take a solid hit from graduation. The Tigers have a solid core coming back in Tommy Williams, Grant Davis, Drew Clark and Parker Redden to defend its crown.
Oak Hill loses three key seniors, but the Red Devils have a strong group coming back and may be the team to beat next season. Bradley Lokant, Lane Jordan, Ty Nelson and Zane Wolfe, just to name a few, will all be back to lead Dan Poland’s squad.
After falling in the regional series to Shady Spring this year, Oak Hill will be be back and hungry for a trip to Charleston.
Independence also returns several players from a very young team. The Patriots will have solid pitching in Hayden Miller and Hunter Schoolcraft along with a solid catcher in Caleb Daniels. David Wilson is back and he can play numerous positions for Indy. Freshman Atticus Goodson and Michael McKinney also proved they could play on the varsity level.
Wyoming East loses standout catcher Eric Hoosier, but has two strong arms back in Matt Caldwell and McQuade Canada. Clay Lester and Chris Harvey also return for the Warriors.
While Oak Hill, Indy and East are battling in Section 1, Shady will have to get past James Monroe in Section 2. The Mavericks lose Nick Jewel, but return pitcher Andrew Hazelwood, along with Xander Castillo, Monroe Mohler and Eli Ballard.
The only bad news for area teams looking for a title in Class AA is Bridgeport will likely be even better next year as they make the journey for its seventh title in a row.
Region 3 in Class A will again be, can anyone get past Charleston Catholic? The Irish made it to the Class championship game this year and bring the entire team back for next year.
Greater Beckley loses Garrett Matherly, however, the Crusaders bring back several solid players including Seth Wolfe, Andrew Patterson, Blake Hunt and Reece Standard to make another run at the Irish.
The dark horse in Region 3 of Class A may be Greenbrier West who also returns several players from this year’s team.
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