‘Dedicated’ South stars fall short in Legion game

HANCOCK – The South baseball stars from the Mid-Peninsula American Legion League, even in defeat, enjoyed their all-star experience Tuesday.

The North edged a South team, 13-12, comprised of players from Kingsford and Channing. North players hailed from Hancock-Houghton, Ishpeming and Marquette.

South MVP Brad Gustafson jacked a two-run homer in a three-hit game. Justin Grailer, Brock Grenier and Wes Paupore each stroked two hits and knocked on two runs.

“It was a great night for the local baseball players that dedicated their summer to baseball,” said Jeff Paupore, one of the South coaches. “Each all-star player selection was predicated on practice and game attendance.

“By no surprise, each player that was chosen performed extremely well.”

The “fun atmosphere” had each player in a different position each inning. Three of the South pitchers – Kenny Pekarek, Wes Paupore and Anthony Rebera – had not worked from the mound once during the league baseball season. They all recorded a hitless shutout inning.

“The kids from Channing and Kingsford developed a special bond quickly,” Paupore said. “All of the players mentioned what a great time they had with each other and how they wished they would have had this team together for tournaments this summer.

“This team may be re-assembled for the prestigious Felch Labor Day Classic.”