DRAFFENVILLE – For the fourth year in a row, the state American Legion junior baseball tournament is coming to Mike Miller Park.
The double-elimination tourney runs from Thursday through Sunday, with the winner earning the chance to advance to a national tournament to be staged in Hope, Ark.
It’s the first time in 10 years that the state champion has had the opportunity to advance to a national tourney, Post 236 baseball chirman Billy Hodge said.
Marshall County High School’s summer team will represent the area as host team of the event and will play the opening game against Mayfield Post 26 at 2 p.m. on Thursday.
The Marshals are sponsored by William A. Doyle Post 236 of Calvert City, which is conducting the tournament.
The defending champion, Paducah Post 31, will play Florence Post 4 at 7 p.m. Thursday.
In the other first-round game in the six-team tourney, Lexington Post 8 will play Ashland Post 76 at 4:30 p.m.
Friday action begins with a loser’s bracket game at noon. The winner of the Paducah-Florence first-round game will take on the loser of the Marshall-Mayfield game at 2:30 p.m
That game will be followed by a winner’s bracket second-round game for the winners of games 1 and 2 on Thursday at 5 p.m.
Consolation bracket play wraps up the Friday slate with a 7:30 p.m. game.
More consolation bracket games and the winners bracket finale fill Saturday’s schedule, with the first game at noon.
The championship round will begin at 11 a.m. Sunday with the winners of the upper and lower brackets meeting.
If the consolation bracket champion wins, a second game will be played at 2 p.m.
In last year’s tourney, Lexington sent the Marshall team to the loser’s bracket in a semifinal game, then lost to Post 31 6-5 in the winner’s bracket finale.
Lexington defeated Georgetown to move to the championship game and dropped a 2-1 decision to the Chief Paduke squad.
The Marshall team won its opener last year 4-2 over Morehead and after the defeat by Lexington was eliminated by Georgetown, 5-2.