Clark kicks off regional tourney
By By Jeff Byrd / staff writer
Aug. 1, 2002
Former Major League Baseball All-Star Will Clark will be in town tonight to speak to players, coaches and fans at a banquet for the opening of the Babe Ruth 14-year-old Southwest Regional.
The banquet is set to begin at 7 p.m. at the Frank Cochran Center.
The nine-team tournament gets underway on Friday morning at Meridian Community College's Scaggs Field with the first of four games. Bentonville, Ark., takes on North Randall County, Texas in the 11 a.m. opener.
Tri-County, Texas meets Southeast Oklahoma at 2 p.m. El Dorado, Ark., vies against Jefferson Parish East, La., at 5 p.m. The final game of the day has host Meridian meeting Lumberton at 8 p.m.
Cost for the tournament will be $12 for an all-tournament game pass. A single day pass can be purchased for $5.
The men in blue for the regional are picks from the national office.
Tournament Director Dan Derrington said the host North Meridian Optimist Youth Baseball Association was able to select a local umpire to join the regionally selected crew of five umpires for the nine-team tournament.
Anderson will join two umpires from Louisiana and two from Arkansas to form a five-man crew. A crew of three will call each game.
The person in charge of managing the umpire crew will be Babe Ruth official Irby Lukehead.
This is the first time the North Meridian Optimist Club has hosted a Babe Ruth Regional. The NMO hosted the 10-year-old State Tournament at Phil Hardin earlier this month and hosted the 13-year-old state tournament last year.