Jun 4, 2012 11:06 AM
The Kentucky National Insurance/KHSAA State Baseball Tournament gets underway Monday at the Whitaker Bank Ballpark in Lexington.
Sixteen teams representing each of the state's 16 KHSAA baseball regions will vie for the state championship. Among the teams in this year's tourney - last year's champion Central Hardin and runner up Mercer County. Newport Central Catholic, North Oldham, Pleasure Ridge Park and St. Xavier also return to the tournament for the second straight year.
Most will consider St. X the favorite to take home a state title. The Tigers ranked third in the state in the final Kentucky Baseball Coaches Association poll and came out of the brutal Seventh Region. St. Xavier came from behind to top No. 7 Male 6-5 in the regional championship game. No. 2 Eastern got bounced in the second round of the tournament.
No. 15 Woodford County came out of the equally tough 11th Region. ESPN ranks junior Clinton Hollon as the best pitcher in the class of 2013. Combined with fellow-junior Logan Parrett, son of former major leaguer and current Jacket coach Jeff Parrett, Woodford enters into the tourney with perhaps the best one-two pitching punch in the state. This will count as the first state tourney appearance for the Yellow Jackets.
Woodford joins five other state tournament first-timers: Bishop Brossart, Calloway County, Meade County, Powell County and South Warren.
Play opens up at Monday at 11 a.m. with South Warren facing No. 12 Central Hardin. St. X takes the field against Mercer County at 1:30 p.m. Pikeville and Bishop Brossart play at 6:00 p.m. and Wooford and Powell County will conclude the first day of action at 8:30 p.m.
Tuesday's lineup is as follows:
Henderson County v. South Oldham at 11 a.m.
Meade County v. Calloway County 1:30 at p.m.
Ashland Blazer v. South Oldham at 6 p.m.
Pleasure Ridge Park v. Newport Central Catholic at 8 p.m.
For the complete tournament bracket, click here.