Shelby County All-Stars clinch trip to World Series

Shelby County 12-and-under All-Star Kyle Cofer caught a line drive back to the mound and threw to first to complete a double play and record the final out of a 13-11 win over Jackson County in the Dizzy Dean State tournament July 13 that clinched a trip to the World Series.

Everything happened so fast, Cofer didn’t have any time to catch his breath before teammates dogpiled on top of him in the middle of the diamond at the Columbiana Sports Complex.

Meanwhile, Cofer’s play left many spectators breathless, including Shelby County coach Jerry Moore.

“That was unbelievable,” Moore said. “It’s an incredible play. Major Leaguers struggle with that one.”

Shelby County will face Blount County in the Dizzy Dean 12-and-under semifinals. The championship game is set for July 16 at 6 p.m.

Cofer played an instrumental role in leading Shelby County to the Dizzy Dean 12-and-under semifinals in the State tournament.

Cofer had a two-run double and RBI single at the plate. He took the mound in relief of starter Jeremiah Pennington and closed the game by only giving up four runs with two strikeouts in the final 4 1/3 innings.

Shelby County only needs two more victories to clinch the state title. Moore, while pleased with the pending trip to the World Series in Southaven, Miss., told his players to remain focused on the immediate goal.

“This is our tournament,” Moore said. “We want to win it. We want to keep the trophy here.”

Shelby County scored three runs in the first inning, four in the second, four in the third and a single run in the fourth and fifth innings. Meanwhile, Cofer limited the Jackson County All-Stars to only four runs after entering the game with the score tied 7-7 at the end of the second inning.

Coleman Beasley drove in five runs, including a three-run homer in the second inning. Zeke Robinson had a solo homerun in the fourth inning.

Mack Slaughter drove in two runs, while Tanner Carter and Mason Blythe drove in one run each.

The Shelby County 12-and-under All-Stars include Carter, Blythe, Cofer, Beasley, Slaughter, Robinson, Pennington, Cole Pate, Tyler Carter, Cameron Morris, Kolby Morris and Logan Moore.

Chelsea was eliminated from the tournament July 13 with a loss to Jemison. Vincent was eliminated after a July 12 loss to Chelsea and Calera was eliminated following a July 11 loss to Jemison.