All Star coaches review hard-fought road to State Championship with Lion’s Club

Published 6:03 pm Friday, July 24, 2015

Bainbridge Leisure Services Department program director Joey Lee and coach Jimbo Godwin, coach of the department’s 11-and-12-year-old Georgia Recreation and Parks Association State Championship Baseball Team, reviewed the run to the title for members of the Bainbridge Lions Club Wednesday.

Lee opened the program by reviewing the teams play during the championship round in Tifton.

“The team opened tournament play at the double elimination state tournament with a 16-0 win over Whitfield County that was stopped after three inning because of the run rule,” Lee said. “Braxton Johnson hurled a no hitter and struck out nine.”

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Lee said the next game was against the Savannah All Stars, which was a travel ball team.

“The Savannah team had a lot of big, good-looking players, but our players were not intimidated,” Godwin, who coached the team with Kevin Toole, said.  Godwin said. “We hung in played hard, posted an 11-3 victory.”

Lee said the team fell into the losers bracket following 10-9 loss to the Thomasville All Stars.

“It was a double elimination tournament so, after being edged by Thomasville, we could not lose again,” Lee said. “A year earlier, as 11-year-olds, the players were just edged out in the state tournament and they were determined that it was not going to happen again. Coach Godwin, coach Toole and the players, did a great job of fighting their way back from the losers bracket and winning the state championship.”

Lee said a 9-4 victory over the Savannah All Stars put them up against the Thomasville All Stars again, and they knew they would have to beat them twice to win the state championship.

“To our players credit, they first defeated the Thomasville All Stars 9-6 to get to the second game with them, which was a winner take all game for the state championship.   In the second game we won 4-1 behind a strong pitching performance by Michael Conder. Pitching was one of our real strengths. We had a number of strong pitchers.”