Home Breaking News Scrappers win Class 4A title over Shiloh; Scrapperettes fall to Pottsville

Scrappers win Class 4A title over Shiloh; Scrapperettes fall to Pottsville

The Nashville Scrappers display their state championship trophy after defeating Shiloh Christian 4-1 May 19 at Baum Stadium.

By John R. Schirmer
News-Leader staff

FAYETTEVILLE – Ten years after winning their first state baseball championship, the Nashville Scrappers returned to Baum Stadium and earned their second state title by defeating Shiloh Christian 4-1 May 19.

“Ten years is a long time,” Coach Kyle Slayton said. “We were glad to get back up there.”

Two members of the 2007 team are assistant coaches with Slayton – A.J. Whitmore and D.J. Graham. “It was so enjoyable to watch the game. A.J. and D.J. got to watch from the dugout instead of playing. They probably appreciated Friday’s win more than when they played. They were as excited as the kids were,” Slayton said.

Senior Zach Jamison was named the MVP of the state championship game.

Tuesday, the Arkansas Activities Association announced that Slayton will be the head coach for the West in the annual Arkansas All-Star game to be played June 20 at the University of Central Arkansas in Conway. Jamison likely will be selected for the team, and Slayton said he would “try to get another senior on the All-Star team” as well.

A host of Scrapper fans made the journey to Fayetteville, where they cheered their team to victory in a game that saw a 93-minute weather delay when lightning was reported within eight miles of Baum. Softball and soccer finals were also stopped under AAA rules.

Slayton called the finals “kind of a normal Scrapper game. We played great defense. We pitched well. We got big hits at the right time. Overall, we played another fantastic game.”

Slayton said that defensively, “Chris Willard had an MVP-type game. He turned a couple of big defensive plays. [Pitcher] Tyler Hanson had three good innings, then couldn’t throw it

up there. Zach came in and did an amazing job. [Catcher] Dalton Smead threw a runner out in the sixth. Colin Parnell had a big fly catch. Jamison threw a kid out at third.

“We had play after play of somebody else making something happen. That’s how our team has been. It’s somebody different every day” who turns in a key contribution.

“The biggest thing about this team was the team unit they became. All 24 were team players. They accepted their role. The guys on the field got that look in their eye. I thought they never backed down or got nervous. This was the best team effort I’ve had in 20 years,” Slayton said. “By far, this was the most enjoyable to watch.”

Things weren’t always like that, according to Slayton. “We were bad at times early in the season. I’ve had people ask why we were so good after spring break. I don’t know. We gave the kids nine days off. Before that, we kind of put the hammer on them.”

The Scrappers went 1-4 in an early tournament in Pittsburg, Texas, and came home with the realization that they should have won most of the games they lost. “After Pittsburg, we put up consequences” for performances which weren’t up to team standards.

“We lost to Ashdown there 5-0 and had 12 strike outs. We pulled some starters” and ran more as a reminder to stay focused.

“Everybody started playing for each other and not playing for himself,” Slayton said.

“They really just came together as a unit and team after the break,” Slayton said. When Ashdown played at Wilson Park, the Scrappers took a 9-3 victory.

“I think the win against Ashdown here was the turning point. They saw they could play with anybody,” Slayton said.

The Scrappers played especially well at home. The only loss at Wilson Park came against Redwater in the Ralph Gross Tournament.

Slayton said the recently completed season was “an emotional year. My mom died the first week of the season. The team started playing well toward the end. It was a Cinderella ending the way the kids performed. They have to make the plays, and man, they did.”

The seniors missed the state tournament two years in a row. “Our number one goal was to get to state. We won district, won regionals and won state,” Slayton said.

There won’t be much of a break during the summer, according to Slayton. Some of the players will be involved in summer ball with 15-20 games. Games will be played mostly in June. “We have to be done here by June 18” because of renovations which will be going on at Wilson Park. Later games will be on the road.

Slayton will be in Conway for All-Star Week starting June 18. He will coach in the Prep Baseball Showcase June 12-13. Willard will play on an Xtra Innings team June 19-20. Slayton’s 12-year-old son Slade will be playing on a team. “It’s going to be a busy summer,” Slayton said, then it will be time for football.

“It’s been a great year. We won our last 16 games. Only seven teams in the state are on a winning streak now,” the winners of the seven classifications.

This was Slayton’s first 30-win season. “It’s been one of my career goals. That 2007 bunch went 29-6. This year we were 30-7. There was a time when D.J., A.J. and I talked about whether we could win 20 games, then we won 30.”

Slayton has won three state baseball championships, including the two at Nashville and one at Fouke. He’s also been a part of four state football championships with the Scrappers, making him 7-0 in title games. “I never take that for granted.”

Slayton said parental and community support have been vital for the Scrappers.

“I can’t say enough about the parents. Lance Pope, Johnny Bowman, Steven Jamison, Kelly Chambers cooked a lot of burgers, steaks, hot dogs and chicken. They pulled that grill around everywhere. We’re lucky to be here at Nashville. The community has been great. We got donations to help with food and hotels. You don’t get that in many places.”

Another factor in the Scrappers’ success – white uniforms. “We only wore white uniforms the last three weeks,” Slayton said. “We only lost one game in them all season.”

• • • • • • • • • •

By John R. Schirmer
News-Leader staff

FAYETTEVILLE – The Nashville Scrappers won the Class 4A state baseball championship May 19 by defeating Shiloh Christian 4-1 at Baum Stadium.

The Scrappers took a 1-0 lead in the third inning and never trailed, although the Saints tied the score at 1-1 in the top of the fourth.

Zach Jamison was named the Most Valuable Player.

Friday’s game took more than 3 1/2 hours after a 93-minute weather delay stopped the action in the bottom of the first inning. Lightning was reported within eight miles of Baum Stadium, forcing the delay under regulations by the Arkansas Activities Association and the NCAA.

After Shiloh tied the score, the Scrappers put up one run each in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings to seal the victory and the state championship. Shiloh was the defending Class 4A state champion.

Chris Willard scored two runs for Nashville. Jamison and Aaron Lott added one run a piece.

Jamison, Willard and Tyler Hanson were the leading hitters for the Scrappers with two hits each. Austin Bowman, Jayden Hostetler and Dalton Smead rounded out the nine hits for Nashville.

The Scrappers had 3RBIs, one each from Willard, Bowman and JR Middleton.

Hanson pitched four innings, throwing 66 pitches and giving up three hits and one run while striking out three Saints.

Jamison finished the final three innings with 38 pitches. He gave up no runs on three hits and struck out one.

The Scrappers went to bat 27 times and recorded 16 quality at-bats for 47.06 percent.

Nashville committed one error, with two for Shiloh.

The state title is the first for Nashville since 2007.


Scrapperettes fall to Pottsville

By John R. Schirmer
News-Leader staff

FAYETTEVILLE – With errors playing a major role, the Scrapperettes fell behind against Pottsville 3-0 in the first inning and never recovered as the Lady Apaches won the Class 4A state championship by defeating Nashville 11-3 May 19 at Bogle Park.

Pottsville added one run in the second, one in the third and three in the fourth to take an 8-0 lead before the Scrapperettes scored twice in the bottom of the inning, narrowing the gap to 8-2.

The teams traded runs in the fifth, and Pottsville added two scores in the top of the seventh to provide the final margin.

The Scrapperettes committed seven errors against Pottsville, with one for the Lady Apaches.

Pottsville outhit the Scrapperettes 12-5.

Julianne Futrell, Brookelyen Cox and Anna Kesterson scored for Nashville. Cox and Kesterson had two hits each, and Hannah White posted the fifth.

Nashville scores came on RBIs by Madi Miller, Alyssa Harrison and White.

The Scrapperettes went to bat 27 times and posted seven quality at bats for 21.88 percent.

Miller pitched the entire game, throwing 57 pitches. She yielded 12 hits and 11 runs with two strikeouts and three walks.

The loss was the first for the Scrapperettes in a state championship game at Bogle. They won state in 2010, 2012 and 2013.

Nashville was 26-9 for the season.

Tyler Hanson pitches in the state championship game Friday, May 19 at Baum Stadium in Fayetteville.
Hannah White arrives safely at second base May 19 during the Scrapperettes’ game against Pottsville in the state Class 4A finals.
Julianne Futrell slides safely into third base against Pottsville. Futrell would later score for the Scrapperettes.
Austin Bowman takes his turn at bat for Nashville in the Scrappers’ 4-1 victory over Shiloh Christian in the state finals.
Scrapper senior Zach Jamison was named Most Valuable Player of the state 4A championship game.
Coaches D.J. Graham and A.J. Whitmore hold the championship trophy May 19 on the familiar field at Baum Stadium. They were seniors on Nashville’s first state championship team in 2007.
Madi Miller pitches for the Scrapperettes in the state Class 4A finals May 19 at Bogle Park on the University of Arkansas campus.
Gabi Dougan leaves the field after making the catch for an out against Pottsville in the state softball finals. Pottsville won the game 11-3.
Tim Owens (right), of KTAL Shreveport, interviews Coach Kyle Slayton and son Slade on the field at Baum Stadium after the Scrappers won state.