By VAN HOLLAND
The opening ceremony for the 2013 Tarboro Easter Classic will take place Tuesday at 6 p.m. at Municipal Stadium. Sixteen selected participants from the eight teams competing in the classic this year take to the field in a home run derby. The derby is a prelude to the classic.
The following teams are participating in the 20th Annual Easter Classic this year, host team, Tarboro Vikings, SouthWest Edgecombe Cougars from Pinetops, Bunn Wildcats from Bunn, Lawrence Academy Warriors from Merry Hill, St. Maria Goretti Gaels from Maryland, Timber Creek Chargers from New Jersey, Jefferson Forest Cavaliers from Virginia and Jefferson Area Falcons from Ohio are making their debut in the classic.
Every year, the day before the classic begins, the Tarboro High School Booster Club host the opening event for the players and the public to come out an enjoy a free evening of high school home run hitters and some good ole down south barbeque, pig pickin' style.
The booster club cooks a couple of pigs on the grill and has all the trimmings to go along with it. The meal is just $7 and you get to enjoy the four rounds of the home run derby. The meal will be served at 5:30 p.m.
The derby is set up in a special format. Each team in the classic choses two players from their respective team to hit in the derby. Each participant is given ten outs per plate appearance. The outs are determined when the player takes a swing and is unable to hit a home run.
After the first round, the top four players advance to the next round, which is determined by the amount of home runs that are hit by that selected player. From the hitters in the second round, the top two who hit the most home runs that round will advance to the final round. In the final round both participants get 10 outs to see who can hit the most home runs in that round. Home runs aren't carried over from each round. The participant who hits the most home runs in the final round will be crowned the 2013 Easter Classic Home Run Derby champion. The derby winner and runner-up will receive trophies that are donated by Don Clark, who is an agent for Farm Bureau Insurance Company in Tarboro.
The participants for this years contest will be, from Timber Creek, Brandon Cornelius and Evan Holland, Bunn will be Tony Alafitta and Christian Sledge, Jefferson Area will be Kyle Ashburn and Jesse Skvarek, Tarboro High will be Gene Warren and TJ Bolton and SouthWest will be Justin Rodriguez and Stephen Thompson. The other three schools didn't comment on who was hitting for their respective team.
The home run derby will be followed up on Wednesday with four games slated to be played starting at 11 a.m. and going through the remainder of the day.
Come out and enjoy three days of high school baseball action at beautiful Municipal Stadium in Tarboro.