WACO — For Belton’s Breck Potvin and Trey Bell, competing Monday night at Waco ISD Sports Complex in the Central Texas All-Star Game was an opportunity to play one final time on the diamond with fellow Tiger Logan Earl, and it was also a chance to reconnect with teammates they played club ball with in the summer.
“I thought it was a great experience getting to come and play with some of my old buddies,” Potvin said.
“I grew up with everybody, and getting to play with them was pretty fun. I had a great time.”
“At the end of the season, there’s no practice anymore and you’re kind of on your own,” he said.
“Coming out and seeing live pitching again, there’s always that perfect game you want to have — batting 1.000 — but I felt like we did pretty good.
“I had six players on this team I grew up playing ball with and four on the other team. What it was, basically, was a sandlot game with umpires.”
The South All-Stars, featuring Potvin, Bell, Earl and Harker Heights’ Daniel Cole, led for most of the contest. But in the end, Waco Midway’s Caden Henderson hit a one-out walkoff double to deep left field to score Groesbeck’s Chandler Boyd from second, and the North All-Stars emerged with a 5-4 victory.
Cole started the game at pitcher for the South and pitched the first two innings. He allowed one run on two hits and three walks while striking out three.
The McLennan Community College signee was advised by the Highlanders’ coaching staff to give his arm a rest at the conclusion of the 2017 baseball season, so he had not pitched on a mound since May.
But it didn’t prevent him from being fired up to pitch Monday.
“I really haven’t had a true break for my arm in I don’t know how long,” Cole said. “But I was amped up. It’s definitely different being out here with half these guys I’ve played with before in the past. You come out and see old friends, and it’s really unique.
“Seeing different faces in the stands getting to watch me pitch, and being able to pitch in front of new people and even new players, it kind of amped me up.”
Cole was also 1 for 2 at the plate with a single in the top of the first to load the bases with no outs after Temple’s Reid Hesse and Potvin led off the contest with consecutive singles.
Cole was very familiar with the pitcher on the mound, Robinson left-hander Dru Dziedzik.
“I trusted my mechanics; I’ve done this before,” Cole said. “I went up there and had two strikes on me, and that’s actually my buddy that was on the mound. We played on the same summer team, and it’s an old friendship — I’ve known him for a long time.
“I know how he pitches, so I knew he was going to come inside with a fastball and I just turned on it.”
Lexington’s Max Lopez and Cameron Yoe’s Caden Harris tallied RBI groundouts to put the South up 2-0.
West’s Kory Webre plated a run in the bottom of the second with a bases-loaded walk to pull the North within 2-1.