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Monett and Purdy grab top seeds for district baseball

Thursday, May 5, 2011

The Monett Cubs and Purdy Eagles were selected as the number one seeds in their respective district baseball tournaments on Wednesday.

In the Missouri Class 3, District 12 Tournament Monett is the top seed. Cassville is second, Mt. Vernon is third and Seneca is, fourth.

Monett will serve as the tournament's host site.

"It's an honor to be voted number one by your peers," said Monett Head Coach Michael Calhoun. "This is the first time in my 10-year tenure that we have been selected the first seed. The fact that the other coaches think you deserve to be at the top of the bracket speaks volumes about our team."

Despite the honor, Calhoun understands that his team hasn't achieved anything yet. Of Monett's six losses this season, three have come against teams competing in this district and Monett used a seventh inning rally to defeat another team.

"The top four teams are very good," said Calhoun. "Any one of these schools is capable of winning the whole tournament. For us, we have to understand that if we lose, our season is over.

"We are as healthy as we have been all season, and our pitching rotation is rested and ready," added Calhoun. "We can't relax in any of our games. There are no given wins."

The Cubs' skipper says there is not a secret formula for winning the tournament

"You can beat yourself," said Calhoun. "You have got to play team ball and not me ball. The teams that win are fundamentally sound and stay within themselves."

Purdy seeding

In Missouri Class 2, District 12 at Ash Grove. Purdy was also given the top slot in tournament play.

"Our goals are simple," said Purdy Head Coach Joshua Hughes. "Win conference and district titles. We have taken care of the first obstacle, and with the number one seed, we are in position to achieve our second goal."

Purdy was picked as the one seed. Ash Grove is the second seed. Diamond was chosen as the third seed, and College Heights is seeded fourth.

"With the one seed we will have a slight advantage," said Hughes. "Our boys are healthy and ready to play. We don't have to use our ace right away."

For the Eagles, success is reliant upon a tried and true formula.

"If we can throw strikes and play clean, error free baseball, we can win," said Hughes. "There are four teams in this district that have a dominant pitcher. One or two runs is all they need to beat you. We cannot afford a slow start to games."

Monett opens district play against Lamar on May 14 at 12:30 p.m.

Purdy will face Sarcoxie on May 14 as well. First pitch is set for 12:30 p.m.

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