Wednesday, August 6, 2014
Players with ties to Fort Dorchester and Ashley Ridge high schools helped the North Charleston Dixie Majors All-stars capture the World Series championship last week.
North Charleston won four straight games over teams from Virginia, Florida, Louisiana and Alabama to advance to the finals of the tournament held in Ozark, Ala. All but one of those victories was by a margin of five runs or more.
However, the team from Paris, Texas ended North Charleston’s winning streak with an 11-1 victory to set up one final game for the title of the double-elimination tournament. The next day, North Charleston scored two runs in the first inning and then rode the pitching of Charleston Southern University hurler Tyler Pickard to a 2-1 victory that clinched the Dixie Majors (ages 15-19) World Series championship. Pickard only allowed six hits in seven innings on the hill.
“Our hitting was inconsistent the whole tournament,” said Fort Dorchester graduate Myles Snype, who started in right field for the North Charleston All-stars this summer. “There were games when our hitting was on, but in the games when it wasn’t our pitching pulled us through. We have a great pitching staff and practically everyone on the team can pitch so we have plenty of depth.”
Snype was on the 2011 North Charleston team that advanced to the Dixie Majors World Series but fell short of clinching a championship so he was one of several members of this year’s team who set out this season to bring the World Series championship back to South Carolina. With a total of four championships, North Charleston is now one of a handful of teams on the cusp of setting a new record for the most Dixie Majors titles.
“It was a great experience,” Snype said. “In 2011 I was just a freshman and didn’t get to play much but this year I did and it was a lot of fun.”
Two of his high-school teammates were also on the North Charleston team this summer. Malik Grant played first base for the team and Ryan Thomas was one of the team’s catchers.
A pair of Ashley Ridge graduates also helped the team to its fourth World Series title. Wesley Aschenbrenner contributed as an infielder and Jason Miller pitched and also spent time in the infield.
Thomas is a rising senior expected to return as Fort Dorchester’s catcher in the spring. The others are all preparing for their freshman year of college.
Snype will join the Benedict College baseball team while Miller will play for The Citadel and Aschenbrenner will play for USC Salkehatchie. Grant will attend Coastal Carolina University.
Longtime Dixie Majors coach Kenny Wilkinson, a member of the Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame, was again the person who spearheaded North Charleston’s run at the championship.