The area was well represented at the recent Futures and Rising Stars All-Star games. The games were played in an East versus West format. All area players selected to the showcase played on the West squad. Two selections - Bay High's Cooper Cooksey and SSC's Dawson Strong - were named MVPs following their performances
Bay High had Cooper Cooksey and Carson Moran both playing on the Rising Stars West squad. Hancock had Colton Cuevas playing on the Futures West squad and Blaine Knight playing on the Rising Stars West team. Pass Christian was represented by Dustin Allison and Mason Knapp in the Futures game and Corben Williams in the Rising Stars contest. St. Stanislaus sent Braxton Bean, Dawson Strong and Taylor Lafontaine to the Futures game and Cole Fletcher and Ethan McNeill to the Rising Stars game.
Cooksey earned Defensive MVP for the West squad in the Rising Stars game for his performance on the mound. Despite the West losing big, Cooksey pitched one inning and secured two strikeouts in a three-up three-down frame. Moran was able to connect for a double in the game.
For the 2019 season, Cooksey batted .259 with 15 hits, five runs scored, 12 RBIs, and three doubles. On the mound, he was 2-5 with a 1.88 ERA and 33 strikeouts.
Moran hit .317 with 20 hits, 15 runs scored, 10 RBIs, five doubles and a homerun.
Bay High head coach Kevin Burdine commented, "I am very proud of Cooper and Carson. They played and represented the Bay High community very well. They both had a good year and we look forward to having them return next season."
In the Futures game, Cuevas was 0-for-1 with a strikeout and two walks. During the season, Cuevas hit .333 with 26 hits, 16 runs scored, seven RBIs, four doubles and a triple. On the mound, he went 1-3 with a 4.38 ERA and 33 strikeouts as Hancock went 10-14.
In the Rising Stars game, Knight went 1-for-2 at the plate with a double. He also pitched one inning and recorded a strikeout and did not allow any hits.
During the season, Knight hit .306 with 19 hits, 13 runs scored, 17 RBIs, four doubles, and a homerun. On the mound, Knight was 2-0 with a 2.58 ERA and 24 strikeouts.
Hancock head coach Anthony DeWitt stated, "Colton is a leader and is always putting in the extra work to get better. He had a good year and we are looking forward to his senior season. Blaine is a talented three-sport athlete. We are looking forward to three years of high school ball and watching him develop."
Mason Knapp and Dustin Allison suited up in the Futures game. Knapp drew two walks in the game while Allison pitched one inning and recorded two strikeouts. Williams, in the Rising Stars game, was not able to connect at the plate.
In 2019, Knapp hit .358 with nine RBIs, three doubles and a triple. Allison batted .318 with 10 RBIs and two doubles. On the mound, he was 2-6 with 53 strikeouts. Williams hit .213 with nine RBIs, three doubles and a triple. The trio helped the Pirates to the first round of the Class 4A state playoffs and finished with a record of 8-19.
Pass Christian head coach Ricky Smith stated, "It was very special to have three players representing Pass Christian baseball at such a great event. These are special young men who were well-deserving and I am excited about their future with Pass Christian baseball."
Braxton Bean, Taylor Lafontaine and Dawson Strong all competed for the West squad in the Futures game. Strong was named the Offensive MVP of the game after hitting a triple, double and tallying four RBIs. During the season. Strong batted .324 with 12 doubles , 25 RBIs and a homerun. On the mound, he went 5-3 with a 3.26 ERA and 69 strikeouts.
Lafontaine and Bean both had hits in the Futures game, as well. In 2019, Lafontaine hit .310 with eight doubles, three triples, 14 RBIs, 20 stolen bases and scored 37 runs.
Bean batted .398 in 2019 with five doubles, 36 RBIs and scored 22 runs. Bean was a second team All-MAC 4A All-State selection.
Cole Fletcher and Ethan McNeill both played in the Rising Stars game as pitchers. Each one pitched an inning and allowed one run each. During the season, Fletcher batted. 289 with three doubles. On the mound, Fletcher had a 2.25 ERA with 15 strikeouts in 28 innings pitched.
McNeill batted .302 in 2019 with five doubles and 11 RBIs.
SSC head coach Mark Logan added, "We are thrilled that the players have been recognized to play in the Futures and Rising Stars games. We are very proud of them and their accomplishments and look forward to having them all back next year."
All five of these players helped the Rocks to a 25-9 record with the Division 8-4A title and a trip to the Class 4A state quarter-finals.