Salem O-Zone team undefeated after three games

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Salem’s Grant Clemens puts the tage on Craig County’s Hayden Reynolds at second
Michael Walthall checks
in with a run for the Salemites. PHOTOS BY BRIAN HOFFMAN

The Salem All-Stars were one win away from a trip to the O-Zone baseball state tournament when the paper went to press this week. Salem was undefeated in the Dixie League District 7 tournament at Waid Park in Franklin County.

The Salemites were 3-0 and had to beat Vinton one more time to make it to the state. Salem opened with a 6-0 win over Craig County late Friday night, as a doubleheader was pushed back an hour and a half due to thunderstorms and the Salem game didn’t conclude until after 11 pm.

Salem had a Saturday bye, then returned to action with a 12-9 win over Vinton on Sunday. Salem beat Franklin County on Monday, 15-5, to eliminate the host team and leave only the Salemites and Vinton remaining in the field.

Salem O-Zone coach Shawn Rakes talks things over with pitcher, and son, Wilson in Dixie League action in Franklin County Friday night.

Salem and Vinton were scheduled to play Tuesday, with Salem at 3-0 and Vinton at 2-1. That game was rained out and rescheduled for Wednesday. If Salem won, the tournament is over. If Vinton won, the two would play again tonight for the right to represent District 7 in the state.

The Virginia state Dixie League O-Zone tournament is scheduled to begin July 6 in South Hill. O-Zone is for 12 and under boys.

The Dixie League AAA District 7 tournament, for 10 and under boys, is scheduled for Vinyard Park in Vinton beginning this Friday. Glenvar will open the tournament with a 6 pm game against Franklin County, followed by Salem against North Roanoke at 8 pm. On Saturday the Glenvar-Franklin winner will play host Vinton at noon, followed by the two Friday losers at 1 pm. The tournament is double elimination and runs through July 3rd with an “if game” on July 5th