PREP BASEBALL: Central Hardin leads All-Region Team (06/26)

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By Chuck Jones

The Central Hardin Bruins dominated the 5th Region once again, so it should come as no surprise they did the same when it came to the All-Region Team.

The Bruins landed four players on the first team and two more on the second team, which easily led all teams. Elizabethtown and Bethlehem each had three players selected.

“That’s a great accomplishment for the kids and it’s a great accomplishment for the program,” Central Hardin coach Todd Thompson said. “We had several kids play well and I guess the coaches recognized that. It’s a great thing for the kids and the program.”

Seniors Drew Harrington, Troy Squires and Zach Ditto along with junior Josh Krupinski were named to the first team. Harrington, the Region Player of the Year, batted .465 with nine doubles and three home runs. He had 23 runs scored and 48 RBIs. On the mound, Harrington was 10-1 with a 0.26 ERA. He struck out 146 in 80 innings.

Squires hit .460 with four doubles and a triple. He was second on the team with 41 runs scores. Squires also had seven saves and a 0.44 ERA. Ditto batted .495 with nine doubles, two triples and three homers. He led the team with 43 runs and was second in RBIs with 38. Krupinski was 12-0 with a 0.95 ERA. He recorded 85 strikeouts in 59 innings.

“(Drew and Josh) produced a lot of wins,” Thompson said. “We had excellent offensive numbers from those three, Drew, Troy and Zach. They had very solid years. And Drew, Josh and Troy all three had solid years on the mound.”

Senior Alex Crowder and junior Spencer Lucas were selected to the second team. Crowder batted .375 with 38 runs, 20 RBIs and 15 stolen bases. Lucas posted a 7-1 record with a 1.75 ERA. He had 48 strikeouts in 44 innings.

“Alex is your typical hard-nosed player,” Thompson said. “He was very good for us, defensively and offensively. Spencer had a solid year. He made a lot of progress from his sophomore year. He pitched a lot of big games for us this year.”

Elizabethtown sophomore Zeke Pinkham was named to the first team after hitting .509 with 56 RBIs. He also had 17 doubles, two triples and six homers. Seniors Garrett Morgan and Cannon Pender were selected to the second team. Morgan batted .462 with seven doubles and five triples and was 4-0 on the mound. Pender posted a 7-4 record and he hit .387 with eight doubles and 23 stolen bases.

“The last couple of years, we haven’t had many on the team, so to have multiple guys selected, that says a lot about the individuals and the team,” Elizabethtown coach Don Pitts said. “Zeke had a tremendous year. Garrett was around .500 all year. Cannon flirted with .400 and he was our most solid pitcher all year. We’re really pleased with them getting selected.”

North Hardin and John Hardin each had one player selected to the team. Trojan sophomore Javier Echevarria and Bulldog junior Dale Gumm both were first-team selections.

Echevarria batted .371 with eight doubles and three homers, while driving in 37 runs. On the mound, he was 5-3 with a 3.74 ERA. He registered 72 strikeouts in 58 innings.

“Javy had a very good sophomore season,” North Hardin coach Ace Adcock said. “He really developed into a No. 1 on the mound. He hit in the three hole and he improved immensely in a year. He was pretty much our lead guy. He was a guy we’d give the ball to in a big game or to get a big hit.”

Gumm hit .410 with 14 doubles, two triples and two home runs. He scored 37 times, drove in 24 runs and stole 19 bases. Gumm posted a 3-6 record and struck out 80 in 44 1/3 innings.

“He had a pretty good year,” said John Hardin coach Greg Gumm. “He led us in several offensive categories. He didn’t have as good of a record as he’s had in the past on the mound. But he hit the ball well. He really improved from last year, and hopefully he continues to improve from this year to next.”

LaRue County’s lone representative was senior Cole Hughes, who made the second team. He batted .323 with six doubles. Hughes was 4-5 on the mound with a 3.52 ERA. He had 79 strikeouts in 65 2/3 innings.

Green County senior Brennen Milby, Bethlehem junior Conner Ballard and Adair County senior Will Hixson rounded out the first team.

Bethlehem junior Jimi Keating and sophomore Jake Yates, Taylor County seniors Will Hollingsworth and Justin Hazel, Bardstown junior Shunta Muto and Green County senior Austin Walley were selected to the second team.

The coaches nominated their own players for the team and then a ballot was sent out. The coaches voted on the top 20 players. Five schools didn’t participate in the nominating or voting process.

Chuck Jones can be reached at (270) 505-1759 or cjones@thenewsenterprise.com.




First team

1. Drew Harrington, Central Hardin

2. Troy Squires, Central Hardin

3. Zeke Pinkham, Elizabethtown

4. Zach Ditto, Central Hardin

5. Brennen Milby, Green County

6. Javier Echevarria, North Hardin

7. Josh Krupinski, Central Hardin

8. Conner Ballard, Bethlehem

9. Dale Gumm, John Hardin

10. Will Hixson, Adair County

Second Team

1. Garrett Morgan, Elizabethtown

2. Jake Yates, Bethlehem

3. Cannon Pender, Elizabethtown

4. Shunta Muto, Bardstown

5. Will Hollingworth, Taylor County

6. Austin Walley, Green County

7. Jimi Keating, Bethlehem

8. Alex Crowder, Central Hardin

9. Spencer Lucas, Central Hardin

10. Cole Hughes, LaRue County

10. Justin Hazel, Taylor County

Honorable Mention

Bardstown: Daniel O’Daniel.

Bethlehem: Blake Brangers.

Campbellsville: Zach Durham, Austin Hash and Chase Thomas.

Central Hardin: Gabe Hogan.

Elizabethtown: Cody Bridges, Austin Freyberger and Hunter Sullivan.

FortKnox: Jon Box.

GreenCounty: Colton Bush and Cody Houk.

HartCounty: Luke Sims and Ross Thompson.

North Hardin: Lance Baker, Graham Mathews and Jamaal Wilson.

TaylorCounty: Daniel Carney and Jason Reynolds.