Manager Ken Richmond isn't one to make comparisons too often, but he might have to with his most recent Northwest Majors (ages 11-12) all-star team in the Florida Little Majors League.
With three returning players from a team that made it to the semifinals of the FLML state tournament last year, Richmond is attempting to lead a Northwest all-star team to a fourth consecutive district title. Northwest plays at 6:30 tonight against the winner of Thursday night's game between Seminole and Fossil Park. The winner of the district advances to the state tournament, which will be played later in the month in Leesburg.
"This is a very good team, but we'll have to see how good it stacks up to last year's team," Richmond said. "They certainly have shown how good they are defensively and we have some players that can hit."
Northwest proved that with its all-star performance, blanking Seminole 11-0 behind the combined pitching of Kevin Richmond and Brian Threadgill.
"I think we have a real strong team that can do well," said Ken Richmond, who returned Ron and Lane Zimmer and his son Kevin to this year's team. "They've certainly come through so far."
Bill Christie sparked the offense with a two-run homer while Dave Barkhurst and Dan Francis each contributed two RBI. Jeff Aristizabal, Ron Zimmer and Kyle Crump had run-scoring singles.
Northwest came back to shut out Fossil Park 3-0 behind the combined pitching efforts of Crump and Threadgill. Crump started the game and went 5 innings and Threadgill finished. Richmond contributed the bulk of the offense with a two-run homer and Lane Zimmer had two hits.