E.A. Sports Today

6 locals diamond stars

Five players, one coach from Calhoun/Cleburne area make rosters of North-South All-Star baseball, softball games

Local players on the North-South softball-baseball rosters include (clockwise from left) Oxford's Rylee Waldrep and Nate Lloyd, Pleasant Valley coach David Bryant and Cleburne County's Kiara Akles. (File photos)

Local players on the North-South softball-baseball rosters include (clockwise from left) Oxford’s Rylee Waldrep and Nate Lloyd, Pleasant Valley coach David Bryant and Cleburne County’s Kiara Akles. (File photos)

By East Alabama Sports Today

The Calhoun-Cleburne county area is will be well represented in this year’s All-Star Sports Week baseball and softball games.

The squads for the teams have been selected and six players and coaches from the two-county area are in the game.

The North baseball team includes Piedmont’s Taylor Hayes (cover right) and Oxford’s Nate Lloyd. The North softball team includes Oxford’s Rylee Waldrep, Alexandria’s Timberlyn Shurbutt and Cleburne County’s Kiara Akles and will be coached by Pleasant Valley’s David Bryant.

“Any time you are selected by your peers it is special,” Bryant said. “There are many great coaches in this area and state.

“It’s also very special given what had happened to my family in the past week as well. I’m just so thankful and blessed.”

Bryant returned to the coach’s box Tuesday for the first time since his daughter Anna underwent surgery after being hit in the head with a foul ball in the dugout during a tournament in Ardmore April 8.

Shurbutt, a North Carolina State commitment, made the squad despite not playing a game this season while recovering from knee surgery related to an injury she suffered during the basketball season. The Lady Cubs are hoping to have her back before regionals.

Both all-star doubleheaders will be July 19. The baseball will be at Riverwalk Stadium starting at 4 p.m. Lagoon Park will host the softball games at 6 and 8 p.m.

The softball teams split last year’s twin bill with the South winning the first game 4-3 and the North taking the nightcap 1-0. The North leads the series 23-10-3.

The North swept the baseball doubleheader 6-2, 6-3 to extend its series record to 20-11-1.



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