CKRT Post 7 Harrington gets 2018 legion season underway

MILFORD – Mother nature has not been kind to the American Legion baseball season so far.

After getting the 2018 season underway last Tuesday, CKRT Post 7 Harrington has completed just one game due to weather postponements and darkness, but head coach Wayne Hurd likes what he’s seen from his squad so far.

“So far I like what we’ve seen. We’re coming out, being competitive and coming together as a team,” Hurd said. “We’ve got guys from eight different high schools coming together, so we’re trying to build some camaraderie and team chemistry. I think overall our pitchers have come out and thrown strikes and kept us in ball games. We just need to get a little more hitting going. Offensively we’re getting guys on base, but we need to have some more timely hitting.”

Sussex Academy’s Ryan Bishop started Saturday’s game on the mound before the rain rolled in and postponed the rest of the doubleheader until mid July (The Chronicle/Ben Heck).

This year’s squad of 18 consists of kids from Milford (5), Lake Forest (3), Cape Henlopen (3), Sussex Academy (3) Seaford (1), Sussex Central (1), Sussex Tech (1) and Bayview Christian School (1).

“I think the biggest rivalry is with the Milford and the Lake kids, but everybody is real laid back and they enjoy playing baseball,” coach Hurd said. “They’re coming together, there’s no hostility and I think they all enjoy the opportunity to meet with new kids and make friends.”

Last Tuesday’s opener against the Post 6 Patriots, originally scheduled to be a home game, was moved to Seaford High and was eventually suspended due to darkness.

Post 6 held a 10-2 lead in the bottom of the sixth inning at the time of the suspension, and the game will be finished the next time the two teams meet (Tuesday, June 19).

Thursday, June 7, CKRT traveled up north to Caesar Rodney High to take on Fox Post 2.

Post 2 ended up pulling away with the 6-5 victory on a walk-off single in the bottom of the seventh inning.

Pitchers Robbie Baxley (Cape), Bryan Bullock (Milford) and Wade Brooks (Lake) combined to allow just eight hits to Fox Post 2 hitters. Baxley, who started the game, allowed three runs (one earned) on two hits with a strikeout in his three innings of work.

Saturday, June 9 CKRT had a doubleheader against Delaware Veterans Post 1 at Milford High. Due to heavy rainfall, the doubleheader was suspended in the fourth inning of the first game. DelVets held an 8-3 lead at the time of the suspension, and the DH will be resumed Sunday, July 15 at home.

2017 Milford High graduate Michael Robertson in the batter’s box against DelVets Saturday afternoon (The Chronicle/Ben Heck).

“Unfortunately, it comes with the game,” coach Hurd said of the weather. “It’s hard enough to play baseball when it’s dry and sunny, let alone when it’s wet and miserable out here, so you take it with a grain of salt.”

After playing under Milford Post 3 a season ago, coach Hurd made the switch over to CKRT Post 7 in Harrington due to the uncertainty of Post 3’s future.

“Legion baseball offers a scholarship and I wanted our boys to be able to be eligible for a scholarship, so I reached out to the folks in Harrington and I was able to get their sponsorship,” he said. “So, we’re playing under the Harrington post, but our home games are here in Milford.”

The location of Milford High, in relation to the area where the players are coming from across the southern Delaware area, is an ideal location for home games.

“The one nice thing is Milford is centrally located within our zone, so that way we don’t have kids coming from southern Sussex County going into Kent County to play. So at least Milford is kind of halfway.”

Next up for CKRT Harrington: a home showdown with Smyrna Post 14 Wednesday, June 13 at Milford High. First pitch is set for 6 p.m.

2018 roster:

Robert Baxley, Cape Henlopen 2020 – pitcher/centerfield
Cameron Beulah, Lake Forest 2019 – outfielder
Ryan Bishop, Sussex Academy 2019 – pitcher/right field
Wade Brooks, Lake Forest 2020 – pitcher/first base
Bryan Bullock, Milford 2019 – pitcher/right field
Christian Chandler, Seaford 2018 – pitcher/third base
Will Geppert, Cape Henlopen 2017 – outfield
Mason Haggerty, Milford 2019 – outfield
Blaine Hansen, Sussex Central 2018 – third base/left field
Kobe Heinicke, Sussex Tech 2019 – pitcher/second base
Ethan Hurd, Milford 2017 – catcher/third base
Edward Joyce, Cape Henlopen 2020 – catcher/third base
Jimmy Kucharzyk, Milford 2017 – shortstop/left field
Nathan McGray, Lake Forest 2020 – catcher/first base
Anthony Oscar, Sussex Academy 2021 – outfield
Michael Robertson, Milford 2017 – pitcher/right field
Spencer White, Bayview Christian School 2019 – first base
Jason Xiong, Sussex Academy 2018 – second base/third base

Sports Editor Ben Heck can be reached at bheck@newszap.com.

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