July 2, 2010 11:10:00 AM
The Columbus All-Stars will attempt to make their best pitch when they play in the Dizzy Dean 9-year old South State Tournament.
Columbus coach Chad Altmyer is counting on pitching when his team plays in the tournament at Winona.
"I think we have a very good group that''s very competitive," Altmyer said. "I think it will depend on our pitching. As with 9-year olds, consistency is always the key. If we can be consistent on the pitchers'' mound, I think we''ll have a good shot to do really well."
Columbus begins play in the tournament at 2 p.m. today when it goes against Winona.
Columbus will play Clinton at 7 p.m. today if it beats Winona and will play the loser of Starkville and Greenwood at 10 a.m. Friday if it loses.
Starkville plays Greenwood at 4:30 p.m. today.
The championship game is scheduled for 6 p.m. Sunday.
Jerod Bush, Kenny Collier, J.R. Jourdan, Cody Lucas and Deveun Nance are pitchers that Altmyer is relying on.
"I''ve got about four really good pitchers," Altmyer said. "If they can throw strikes we''re going to be real, real good."
Altmyer feels good about the rest of his team in its quest to win the tournament.
"I think we''ve got a team that''s pretty consistent at the plate," Altmyer said. "We can run well. We''ve got a lot of speed. We''ve got some kids that can put the ball in play. That''s the key at this age, putting it in play."
Columbus tuned up for the tournament by playing in a warmup tournament in Starkville. The All-Stars lost 7-6 to Houston and beat Grenada 14-6.
"We didn''t have all of our players, but we did real well," Altmyer said. "It was real encouraging. We would have won the first game, bu in a warmup tournament you do some things you wouldn''t do normally. We were actually ahead 6-2 in the last inning and we let some other kids pitch and they didnt throw strikes and we kind of let the game slip away which we wouldn''t have done if it was a real tournament."
In addition to the pitchers, other members of the team are Steele Altmyer, Chapman Cooper, Max Gee, Tyrin Johnson, Rye McGlothin, Wesley Morrow, Brandon Platero, and Clay Walters.