DUNEDIN - While last year's area seniors take their last cuts for District 12 in the Big League World Series this weekend in Easley, S.C., the underclassmen are earning their stripes through summer Legion ball.
Dunedin's Legion B team cruised past St. Petersburg last week 11-3, and swept an under-manned East Lake team in the semifinals and finals of the Southwest Division, earning a trip to DeLand's Stetson College for the state tournament today.
"When these kids are going out and only getting three innings a week, you know they have to step up and do what they're asked for the team," coach Dennis Duncan said. "It's been fun. These kids have been together for a long time."
Dunedin is 14-2, with the loses coming to Legion A teams Post 79 in New Port Richey and Plant's A team. Last year, the core of this team went 17-3 in Class C, losing three games to Class B teams.
Pitcher Bryan Garcia got the win over St. Petersburg. Max Kreuter won the first game against East Lake, which was missing key staff, and Jacob Rogers hit a home run and went six innings on the mound for the win in the second game. Kreuter pitched the seventh inning of the final game, earning the save.
Rogers, 6-foot-5 and a left-handed batter/right-handed pitcher, has 10 doubles. Nick Starret and Clay Kollenbaum have pitched 80 percent of the team's innings. Ryan Schneider leads the team with a .408 batting average and is second in RBIs.