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June 15, 2014

Baseball season about to heat up in Norman

NORMAN — Summer baseball is coming to Norman.

Next week begins the Heartland Classic, a baseball tournament featuring teams from seven states including Oklahoma. The tournament will begin Tuesday and run through Friday.

Athletes are also busy in their own summer leagues. Norman North is leading the way with four teams playing this summer, including a pair of varsity teams that are competing.

“It’s been going well,” North coach Brian Aylor said. “We’ve got a lot of kids playing and staying busy this summer.”

Track athletes earn honor: Norman High and Norman North both turned in big seasons on the track last season, and Tigers and Timberwolves received another recognition of those accomplishments on Friday.

Seven Norman athletes locked up state titles at the meet last month, while the NHS girls led the way with a third-place team finish, a best for the program. The North girls also took fifth at the event.

Now a number of athletes have been named to the All-City track team, with eight earning first team honors while eight more earned honorable mention. Making the first team for North was Belle Wallace in the 800 and 1,600, Ben Barrett in the 1,600 and 3,200, and Heath Stacy in the pole vault. First-team honorees for NHS included Hayley Redwine in the 3,200, Julia Hanks in the pole vault, and Marisa Fleck in the discus.

Kinsey named to first team: North pitcher Brad Kinsey was named to the All Big City first team after going 10-1 with a 1.28 ERA in North’s run to an undefeated district title. The senior recorded 89 strikeouts in his final season, winning every game he started in district play while facing off against the opposing team’s ace.

Also earning recognition was closer Austin Cranford and outfielder Nick Basquine, whom coach Brian Aylor described as one of the best centerfielders in the state. Basquine was also a standout on the football team, and will attend Oklahoma as a preferred walk-on.

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